On Christmas Day, Comic Relief is launched live on BBC One from the Safawa refugee camp in Sudan during Noel Edmonds’ Late Late Breakfast Show. The producer is Helen Fielding (before her Bridget Jones days!).
BT the brilliant!
BT has supported us from day one, making them a huge part of our success. They provide the telephony, call centres, network management and volunteers that enable us to take millions of pounds of donations.
Oxfam the outstanding
Oxfam has been a partner of Comic Relief since the very beginning. They’ve worked closely with us on projects to tackle poverty and social injustice in Africa, and sold millions of Red Noses in their shops and online.
First Red Nose Day
Lenny Henry and a group of children in Ethiopia celebrate the first ever Red Nose Day. Over 150 celebrities and comedians take part as 30 million viewers watch a huge night of TV on the BBC and raise over £15 million.
Rights not charity
We hold an event to give disabled people in the UK a voice in the decisions affecting their lives; “rights not charity” becomes the watch-word and marks a turning point in securing rights for disabled people in the UK.
BBC One’s Omnibus marks Comic Relief’s 10th birthday by giving it a programme all to itself. 2.8 million people tune in.
Sainsbury’s become one of our leading partners and have since gone on to sell almost 50m Red Noses, raise an astonishing £84m and set up the Fair Development Fund to help transform the lives of small producers worldwide.
JK Rowling offers to write two Harry Potter books exclusively for Comic Relief. The proceeds from the sales of these have so far conjured up over £17 million.
Out of the blocks
The first ever Sport Relief kicks off and the great British public prove they’re great sports by raising more than £14 million.
TK Maxx joins the Comic Relief family as a corporate partner (and has been on board ever since).
We launch a campaign to draw attention to the plight of older people in the UK who are abused by people they should be able to trust. As a result, Comic Relief takes its first steps into TV drama with a show called Dad.
Top of the world
Nine awesome celebs – Gary Barlow, Cheryl Cole, Ronan Keating, Alisha Dixon, Chris Moyles, Denise Van Outen, Kimberley Walsh, Ben Shephard, Fearne Cotton – undertake The BT Big Red Nose Climb and climb up Mt Kilimanjaro and into our hearts by raising over £3m!
We join the jet set
British Airways chooses Comic Relief as its global charity partner – the first partnership to work with Comic Relief that aims to raises money all year round.
Walliams takes the plunge
Sport Relief superstar David Walliams doesn’t just keep his head above water, he swims an astonishing 140 miles along the River Thames for his BT Sport Relief Challenges: Walliams VS The Thames.
Week of hell
In John Bishop’s BT Sport Relief Challenges: Bishop’s Week of Hell, the comedian goes 290 miles out of his way to raise more than £4 million by cycling, rowing and running from Paris to London in five days.