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Children In Need passes £17m

BBC1 viewers had donated more than £17 million for this year's Children In Need appeal by 10pm this evening, the broadcaster said.

The annual TV extravaganza had brought in £17,167,283 so far, the BBC said. This includes donations made from a series of events before this evening's broadcast started at 7.30pm, as well as those made during the evening.

Earlier in the evening the BBC revealed that Radio 2 listeners had already donated £6,186,178 for this year's appeal. These included fundraisers such as a PopMaster quiz night hosted by Ken Bruce in Salford, a star-studded Children In Need lunch hosted by Sir Terry Wogan, and a gala performance of the hit West End musical Matilda.

Last year the charity appeal raised a record £31 million for disadvantaged children and young adults in the UK.

Tonight's six-and-a-half-hour broadcast was being hosted by Sir Terry Wogan, Tess Daly, Nick Grimshaw, Fearne Cotton and Rochelle Humes from pop group The Saturdays.

TV and musical favourites taking to the stage to get the party started included the cast of EastEnders, with a cameo of Grease and performances by Susan Boyle and Cheryl Fernandez-Versini. The annual charity event marked the return of Bruce Forsyth to the Strictly Come Dancing contest with a search to find a young ballroom champion.

The television extravaganza included special editions of popular programmes made especially for Children In Need. A new cartoon starring the famous Tom and Jerry formed part of the evening's entertainment, while an edition of EastEnders, aired shortly after 9.30pm, included blasts from the past with appearances from former characters.

The evening was also featuring performances from celebrity guests including pop group S Club 7, who were set to perform for the first time since 2003.

On BBC2, t he Chris Evans Breakfast Show carried out live auctions across the week with offers such as a Go Mad in Monaco trip and a Festive Foodie Package.

Scottish businessman Sir Tom Hunter donated £1 million to the show's funds, while Radio 2 offered listeners the chance to become DJs for the day by pledging money to play records on the BBC Children In Need Jukebox.

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