Freezing temperatures, knee-deep snow and bitter Arctic winds lead to sweat and tears on Red Nose Day challenge

21st February 2024

  • Sara Davies, Vicky Pattison, Alex Scott and Laura Whitmore enter day three of their Red Nose Day challenge, deep in the isolated Arctic Circle

  • With no turning back, the team were forced to push themselves mentally and physically to reach camp before digging trenches for their tents to protect themselves from the ever-deteriorating conditions

  • Viewers will be able to follow every step of their mission in a special BBC One and iPlayer documentary filmed by Shine TV, airing in the lead up to Red Nose Day which returns on Friday 15 March

  • Money raised by their extraordinary efforts could help tackle poverty, provide food, essential healthcare or safe shelter for people in the UK and around the world

  • Find out how you can get involved and support Sara, Vicky, Alex and Laura: in new window)

Wednesday 21 February: Day three of Sara Davies, Vicky Pattison, Alex Scott and Laura Whitmore’s mammoth Red Nose Day challenge is underway. Having swapped fat bikes for cross-country skis and with another day of snowshoe trekking ahead, the freezing Arctic wilderness shows no signs of letting up for the intrepid celebrities.

Yesterday, the team battled continuous snowfall, bracing wind chills and temperatures of -12 degrees as they attempted to cover enough ground to reach their evening camp. Through a combination of cross-country skiing and snowshoe trekking, the foursome faced an emotionally and physically testing day which brought with it sweat and tears as the enormous gravity of the challenge and the pressure of not failing started to hit home.

Hundreds of miles away from the safe confines of Hemel Hampstead’s Snow Centre, where the team took to the slopes for their pre-challenge training, skiing in the harsh Arctic environment proved to be far more difficult than the celebrities could have possibly imagined. Navigating the knee-deep snow on their snowshoes also brought its challenges, leaving the celebrities tripping and falling as they trekked through the unpredictable terrain, while pulling themselves and their kit up steep inclines throughout the day.

Despite having spent ten hours negotiating the most extreme conditions, the foursome needed to dig deep – literally and metaphorically – once again as they reached their camp site. Racing against the fading light, Sara, Vicky, Alex and Laura needed to dig holes in the snow in order to put up their tents in the deteriorating weather.

Sara Davies said: “Yesterday was an absolute killer. We all started off in good spirits, taking in the beautiful scenery but by the time we were halfway up the mountain, reality was kicking in. I’ve never experienced cold like it and when it got dark everything was five times harder. But Alex was a machine at the front leading the way and that really pushed me on. We woke up this morning after a night in the tents, I stepped into the Mum role, making everyone a hot drink and our rations of porridge. We have another eight to ten hours of grafting today so we’re going to need to dig deep. The one thing that’s keeping us going is what we’re doing it for, to raise those vital funds for people that need it."

Vicky Pattison said: “It’s colder than I ever could have possibly imagined, it’s just unrelenting snow and I can’t feel my fingers or toes. It’s really tough, I’m really overwhelmed, but the lasses have been absolutely class and we’re pulling each other through."

Alex Scott said: “Last night we arrived in darkness, it was blisteringly cold. With our headtorches on, we set up our tents which involved digging a hole in the ground to pitch it. It was a freezing night, but we woke up to Sara making hot chocolate and porridge on the camping stoves and we’re ready for another day trekking and we hope to raise as much money as we can."

Laura Whitmore said: “It’s absolutely freezing here, we’re in the minuses every day. There’s been really thick snow which has made everything harder. Day three awaits and we know it’s going to be even harder, but what we’re doing is a tiny struggle in comparison to what people are going through and that’s why we’re doing it; to help Comic Relief and the amazing causes it supports."

A more sombre mood surrounded camp this morning as the team prepared to set off on day three of their icy journey. Having spent the night camping in tents on the snow, freezing weather conditions and sweeping winds had battered the celebrities’ tents overnight. With just a few hours of sleep, the exhausted group face another day of cross-country skiing and snowshoe trekking through fresh, overnight snowfall.

Sara, Vicky, Alex and Laura’s journey will be filmed for a special BBC One and iPlayer documentary that will air in the lead up to Red Nose Day, which returns on Friday 15 March.

The money raised for Red Nose Day could help to put food on plates and roofs over heads, keep little ones safe and help support families affected by conflict and climate change. It’s never felt more important to come together to support people in the UK and around the world that are struggling.

To support this fearless foursome on this life-changing challenge, visit, in new window)




Adam Cotton, PR Manager

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Out of hours enquiries: 07984 510 473


About Red Nose Day

Red Nose Day is back on Friday 15 March 2024!

It’s that time of year when incredible cake-bakers, joke-makers, telly-watchers, t shirt-wearers, Red Nose-buyers and laugh-til-you-cryers, do something to fight poverty through humour and fun, for communities here in the UK and around the world.

We know that when people come together, great things can happen. So, this March, Comic Relief is uniting the nation to Do Something Funny for Money. The money raised could help put food on plates and roofs over heads, keep little ones safe and help support families affected by conflict and climate change. Having a laugh can make a serious difference.

There are lots of ways to take part in Red Nose Day. To find out more, visit in new window) or follow @comicrelief on social media.

Red Nose Day is an initiative of Comic Relief.

About Comic Relief

Comic Relief is a UK charity that uses the power of entertainment and popular culture to work towards a vision of a just world free from poverty. We raise money to support organisations that are closest to the communities who can make change happen. We support work that will tackle the impact of poverty, injustice, conflict, and climate change in the UK and around the world.

Since launching in 1985, we have raised over £1.5 billion thanks to the huge generosity and kindness of the public and our partners. For more information on our work, visit in new window) or follow @comicrelief on X(opens in new window) (formerly Twitter), Facebook(opens in new window), Instagram(opens in new window), LinkedIn (opens in new window)and TikTok(opens in new window) for the latest content and news.

Comic Relief is the operating name of Charity Projects, registered charity in England & Wales (326568) and Scotland (SC039730).