Blog From Ultra Marathons to Danceathons: Comic Relief Achievements Over the Years

From Ultra Marathons to Danceathons: Comic Relief Achievements Over the Years

Comic Relief is a charity founded in 1985 by scriptwriter Richard Curtis and comedian Lenny Henry. The cause works to combat the world’s problems of famine and poverty.

Since inception, the Comic Relief team have raised over a billion pounds through countless adventure challenges, comical sketches and musical games. From ultra-marathons to cycle relays, mountain treks to singing contests, it brings together several celebrities and broadcasts the documentation of their sponsored challenges in order to help make a difference to the world’s poorest communities.

Ahead of this year's Red Nose Day, we compiled a list of our speakers that have aided Comic Relief in crazy and hilarious ways over the years, from the most famous and heart-rendering occasions to the unthinkable achievements which push bodies to their physical limits, all in aid of raising awareness and money for this fantastic cause.


Lenny Henry 

Lenny Henry is the co-founder and co-host of Comic Relief who has championed the cause for over a quarter of a century and helped bring about incredible lasting change. Having been involved with the charity cause for a very long time, Lenny has witnessed some life-changing experiences. In 2011, he gave up his life of luxury for a short period to visit Kibera in Kenya, in order to see one of the biggest African slums, where he slept in a tiny home with five orphans. The experience brought Lenny to tears and was a wake-up call spurring many into action to support the cause.

Lenny’s experience brought the reality of our world’s problems into the homes of many first-world citizens. Despite difficult viewing, this moment made many realise the severity of the problem and has helped Comic Relief grow in their good work since.

In another iconic moment for the cause, David Walliams, star of the comedy sketch show Little Britain, made a splash when he swam the Channel in 2006. His efforts alone scored over a million for the cause and saw many follow his example and take on the Run A Mile challenge. This challenge secured Sport Relief a solid £18 million!


David Walliams 

2010 saw speaker and Blue Peter presenter Helen Skelton complete a grueling six-week kayak down the Amazon River. Having never been on a kayak before, Helen paddled a tough 60 miles a day to reach her target. Fighting through war wounds, bitter chills and testing landscapes, Helen made it – breaking two world records in the process.


Helen Skelton

Dermot O’Leary danced all night long as he completed as 24-hour danceathon in front of BBC London’s studios. Tapping those feet through blisters and sleep deprivation, Dermot proved he had what it takes to win the support of millions, raising over a million pounds for the cause.


Dermot O'Leary

Last year was the year that Eddie Izzard put his running shoes back on again to complete 27 marathons in 27 days. On top of this, the marathons took place in South Africa where temperatures peaked over 40°C! This astounding achievement cemented Eddie’s place as one of the charity’s heroes.


Eddie Izzard 

Due to the incredible challenges completed and the generosity of the donations from the public, 2015 marked the year in which Comic Relief broke the billion-mark.

This year Red Nose Day will take place on 24th March and, with the work of a great team, it will raise millions more to fundraise thousands of projects across the globe. 

Looking to book these speakers, or another speaker on human rights and philanthropy?

We represent a total of over 6000 speakers, with 1000 listed on our website. For more info., call us on +44 (0) 20 7607 7070 or email us at

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