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An eight-hour TV comedy marathon featuring cameos by Tony Blair and Kate Moss has brought this year’s Comic Relief appeal to a close, and the total funds raised to over £40m (78m USD).

Mr Blair played himself in a sketch set at Number 10 opposite comic Catherine Tate’s schoolgirl character Lauren, resorting to her catchphrase “Am I bovvered?”

The “Red Nose Day” TV gala featured other big names not normally known as comedians, including Daniel Craig, Elle Macpherson and Sting, while established comedy stars such as Ricky Gervais and Borat star Sacha Baron Cohen provided laughs aplenty.

The comedy was interspersed with music from the likes of The Killers, Sugababes and Girls Aloud, and with regular appeals for viewers to make pledges by Billy Connolly and others.

Although the appeal began on January 31, the majority of donations were made on Friday, with the final figure of £40,236,142 announced at the end of the TV show.

This year’s event marked the 11th anniversary of Red Nose Day and the 21st anniversary of Comic Relief in the UK. To date, £425m (825 USD) has been raised.

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