8th February 2023

Emma, Oti and Rylan on the start line of their Red Nose Day challenge in Scotland.

Trio of friends set off on the first day of their demanding journey to summit Cairn Gorm Mountain in the Scottish Highlands

  • Emma, Oti, and Rylan left Braemar this morning – carrying everything they need to survive the next three days

  • Celebrities given hero’s send off by crowds of well-wishers and Pipe band

  • Trio to battle the everchanging Scottish Highlands wintry weather in a bid to summit Cairn Gorm Mountain

  • They will face the ultimate test of willpower, determination, and survival skills

  • Viewers will be able to follow every step of the brutal journey in a special documentary airing on BBC One and iPlayer in the lead up to Red Nose Day

  • Money raised will help people through the toughest times of their lives

  • Red Nose Day returns on Friday 17 March

  • Find out how you can support the team at in new window)

Wednesday 8th February: Emma Willis, Oti Mabuse and Rylan’s Red Nose Day challenge of a lifetime is now underway as the trio set off from the tranquil Scottish village of Braemar earlier this morning. Together they will endure three days of battling blustery winds, ice, rain and freezing temperatures in their attempt to reach and summit the snow-capped Cairn Gorm Mountain.

Carrying everything they need to survive and wild camp for the next three days on their backs, Emma, Oti and Rylan were given a hero’s send-off by crowds of well-wishers this morning. With the chorus of the Ballater & District Pipe Band they set off on their epic Red Nose Day adventure to raise life changing money for Comic Relief.

This first leg of their journey will see the team trek into the Scottish wilderness and tackle difficult terrain as they travel through the foothills of the Southern Cairngorms – battling wet, cold and windy weather to reach camp.

Despite facing a bracingly bitter and cold first night in their tents, temperatures will only get colder as the celebrities’ head into day two and three of the challenge. The physical and mental enormity of the challenge they have taken on for Red Nose Day will certainly be beginning to sink in.

Emma Willis said: “I’m excited, nervous, anxious and scared, all at the same time. Three people, no base camp, completely self-sufficient for three days. There are so many parts of this that scare me. It’s going to be so tough.

“We are setting out to do something for a really good cause, so we need the weather Gods to smile on us and give us the best possible chance of making it to the summit. I've got the Sound of Music in my head already when I look at the mountain. I'll be euphoric if we make it to the top!"

Oti Mabuse said: “Now I’m here it has become very real. I’m petrified. I’m worried about the whole thing – whether it’s the camping, the cold, or carrying the packs. As a dancer, I have strong legs, but I'm not fit at the moment, and I have a lot of old injuries that I'm worried about. I have weak knees that were already hurting after the training. It'll be interesting to see how they cope with days of walking, especially carrying a heavy pack.

“I know Comic Relief challenges are meant to push you, but this will be the hardest thing I have ever taken on. I know I'm going to struggle but I've always believed you only grow from challenging yourself, and this is one big challenge. I'm going to have to dig deep to make it to the finish line."

Rylan said: “With Comic Relief, they say do something funny for money – well, this is funny and dangerous. Probably more dangerous than funny. I know this might seem quite strange, I’m actually looking forward to disappearing for a bit and being cut off. The last time when that ever happened to me was when I was in the Big Brother house, and I really enjoyed it.

“To be taking this on with Emma and Oti is amazing. Emma is like my first ever TV wife and I’ve been close with Oti ever since Strictly. I’ve got two strong women around me that I know will drag me through it when it’s getting hard and hopefully, I can do the same for them.

“So this is it, we’re about to go up a mountain, if I never see you again, it was a pleasure. Wish us luck!"

Graeme Douglas, Expedition Lead said: “It is cold – there’s no doubt about it and we’ve got a lot of wind today. The conditions are going to be tough for them. We’ve got three days and two nights out planned and each night out takes us higher and higher towards the snow and the ice. The last day is our biggest challenge with that wind and the ice, and any exposed skin will be really affected by a high wind and wind chill. It can feel as much as -10 degrees on your cheeks – so it’s going to be cold!"

Every step of Emma, Oti and Rylan's Big Red Nose Day Challenge will be captured for a special documentary, produced by Twofour, which will air on BBC One and iPlayer in the run up to Red Nose Day, which returns on Friday 17 March.

The money raised will help support people struggling with the cost-of-living crisis and tackle issues such as homelessness, mental health problems, and food poverty here in the UK and around the world.

To find out more and show your support to Emma, Oti and Rylan, please visit in new window)



Images of Emma, Oti and Rylan setting off this morning, and images of them taking part in training before the challenge – available here(opens in new window)

Video footage of Emma, Oti and Rylan training in snowy conditions before the challenge – available here(opens in new window)


Red Nose Day PR Team:

020 7820 2500 in new window) in new window)

Out of hours enquiries: 07984 510 473


About Red Nose Day

Red Nose Day is back on Friday 17 March 2023.

Once a year, we all come together to help those who need it most – and we have a great time doing it. So, this year, whether you bake a cake or sponsor your mates, buy a Red Nose or donate on your phone, let’s make Red Nose Day the best day ever. Together we can help people going through the toughest times of their lives and help them break free from the effects of poverty, in the UK and around the world.

Whatever you’re able to do this year - you’ll be part of something incredible and most importantly you’ll be helping to change people’s lives for the better. Visit in new window) or follow @ComicRelief on social media for the latest Red Nose Day content, news and information.

Red Nose Day is an initiative of Comic Relief.

About Comic Relief

Comic Relief uses the power of humour and popular culture to engage people to help others and raises money to support organisations working towards a just world free from poverty.

Our mission combines Comic and Relief. We believe that helping others can be easy and fun, even in the face of the challenges we face every day.

Everyone should be able to have a decent standard of living and to live life with dignity and respect – but right now, in the UK and around the world, poverty and injustice restrict too many of us. We know that a better world is possible. We provide funding to fantastic organisations who are closest to the communities who can make change happen. We support work that will help to alleviate poverty’s consequences, tackle related injustices, and address the link between climate change and poverty.

For information about Comic Relief and the work it carries out, please visit in new window) or follow @ComicRelief on social media for the latest content, news and information.

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