Entertainment & Arts

Children in Need beats record total after raising £31m

Media captionEllie Goulding and Torvill and Dean were among the acts supporting Children in Need

Doctor Who, JLS and the EastEnders cast were among the highlights of this year's BBC Children in Need, which beat last year's record money-raising total.

Sir Terry Wogan presented the six-hour fund-raiser, with Fearne Cotton, Tess Daly, Zoe Ball and Nick Grimshaw.

Olympic ice dancers Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean went head to head in a special Strictly Come Dancing edition as the annual appeal got under way.

The on-the-night total of over £31m raised surpassed last year's £26m.

Fund-raising events have been taking place around the UK.

Greatest hits

Proceedings kicked off with a performance from the stars of West End musical Matilda.

Torvill and Dean were were given high praise by Strictly judges Len Goodman, Bruno Tonioli and Darcey Bussell.

On winning, Torvill said: "I'm really thrilled but I have to say I want to share it with Chris. I'll have it six months and he can have it six months."

Comedian Harry Hill starred in a new version of A-ha's Take On Me video, with a host of guest appearances including the Hairy Bikers.

Boyband JLS performed some of their greatest hits in EastEnders' Albert Square and there was a world exclusive preview of the 50th anniversary episode of Doctor Who.

A nationwide choir of 1,500 schoolchildren performed Gary Barlow's composition Sing.

Media captionChildren in Need 2013 hopes to raise £26m for charities, as Jenny Hill reports

The figure at the end of the telethon - which has been running annually since 1980 - far exceeded last year's on-the-night total and donations are expected to continue in the coming days.

Sir Terry said it was a remarkable tribute to the generosity of the British people.

"It's hard for me to speak of it, absolutely brilliant," he said.

"It's been a staggering total, it's beyond our wildest dreams, over £31m for this country's disadvantaged children. I want to thank you, thank you so much for your contributions, thank you."

In the same week, the British public have donated £30m to the Disasters Emergency Committee appeal for aid after the devastating typhoon in the Philippines.

Rickshaw challenge

Fundraising efforts began in the build-up to the show.

The One Show's Rickshaw Challenge kicked off in Northern Ireland on 8 November, with participants cycling day and night to reach London in time for Friday night's edition of the magazine programme.

Host Alex Jones called it "one of the toughest things I've ever done" - but by Wednesday night the riders had already raised £514,832.

BBC Radio 4 is auctioning off several prizes, including the chance to read the shipping forecast and the opportunity to sit in on the Today programme's editorial meeting.

BBC Radio 3 has recorded two charity singles with the BBC Philharmonic and the Halle Orchestra.

A female ensemble, conducted by Sian Edwards, has covered Little Mix's single Wings combining it with Wagner's Ride of the Valkyries.

Their male counterparts have mixed One Direction's What Makes You Beautiful with Verdi's Anvil Chorus.

Meanwhile, celebrities including Michelle Dockery, Fiona Bruce, Denise Lewis and Kimberley Walsh joined the public in a "no make-up" fundraising day last week.

The money raised by Children in Need is used to help disadvantaged children and young people across the UK.

Over the years, it has distributed more than £690m to charity projects around the country.

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