Comic Relief raised £73m on Friday night

But this was less than was raised in each of the last two Red Nose Days in 2015 and 2013

Ed Sheeran supported Red Nose Day
Ed Sheeran supported Red Nose Day

Comic Relief 2017 raised more than £73m during its biennial television fundraiser on Friday night.

But the total raised on the night was lower than each of the previous two years: £78.1m was raised in 2015, and approximately £75.1m was donated on the night in 2013.

The final fundraising total for 2017 will be released in the summer when all the remaining donations have been brought in.

Two years ago, the final total was £100.3m, compared with £104.4m in 2011.

Red Nose Day’s corporate partners also raised substantial amounts, with Sainsbury’s bringing in £11.6m, TK Maxx £4m and British Airways £3m, all of which contributed to the £73m raised this year.

This year’s viewing figures for the Red Nose Day television event on BBC One and BBC Two peaked at 7.6 million people. The show included the cast of the film Love Actually reuniting and a special 38-guest episode of the Graham Norton Show.

Red Nose Day also ran its first ever YouTube series, which was called Comic Relief Originals and included YouTubers such as Massive Dad, Birthday Girls, Daphne and Liam Williams.

In a statement, Comic Relief, which runs Red Nose Day, said that since the previous event in 2015 more than 11.7 million people in Africa and 70,000 vulnerable young people in the UK had been helped by the charity.

Sir Lenny Henry, comedian and co-founder of Comic Relief, said: "Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone that has helped to raise an incredible amount of money this Red Nose Day for people who really need it most here in the UK and across the world.

"From the fantastic people across the UK who baked cakes, hosted parties and wore crazy outfits to work and school, to those who took on Red Nose Day challenges and donated, your money is seriously going to change lives. On behalf of everyone at Comic Relief, we cannot thank you enough."

If you’re interested in fundraising, you can’t miss Third Sector’s Annual Fundraising Conference on 23 and 24 May. Click here for more information and how to book

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