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Children In Need 2021: Alex Scott stuns in a black velvet gown during annual charity telethon

Alex Scott pulled out all the stops as she hosted the 2021 Children In Need telephone in Salford on Friday.

The football pundit, 37, stunned in a black velvet gown with a daring split as she joined fellow hosts Graham Norton, Mel Giedroyc, Ade Adepitan and Chris Ramsey in fronting the 3-hour BBC One TV marathon. 

Alex teamed her dress with a matching black choker and an array of dazzling jewellery, while her raven locks were swept up into a high, curly ponytail. 

Looking good: Alex Scott pulled out all the stops as she hosted the 2021 Children In Need telephone in Salford on Friday

The evening’s show was kicked off by lovable bear Pudsey channelling his inner James Bond as he made a showstopping entrance via speedboat.

However, the Children In Need icon was left shaken and stirred when bouncers Shaun Ryder and Bez of Happy Monday’s grilled him at the door.

Meanwhile, England captain Harry Kane made a brief appearance as he played a touch of football with Pudsey.

Ed Sheeran was on hand to provide the entertainment early on in the show, with a thrilling performance of his single Overpass Graffiti.

Wow: The football pundit, 37, stunned in a black velvet gown with a daring split as she joined fellow hosts Graham Norton, Mel Giedroyc, Ade Adepitan and Chris Ramsey in fronting the 3-hour BBC One TV marathon

Wow: The football pundit, 37, stunned in a black velvet gown with a daring split as she joined fellow hosts Graham Norton, Mel Giedroyc, Ade Adepitan and Chris Ramsey in fronting the 3-hour BBC One TV marathon

While Clare Balding hosted a school sports day with a difference with a plethora of Olympic athletes competing in activities including the egg and spoon race and tug-of-war. 

Fans were given an eyeful as Olympic diver and I’m A Celebrity contestant Matty Lee stripped down to his speedos (and a scarf knitted by Tom Daley) for the egg and spoon race, insisting to ‘Miss Balding’ that he felt more ‘comfortable’ that way.  

Elsewhere, fans were treated to a special performance of the official 2021 Children In Needed single Everywhere, with Niall Horan and Anne-Marie providing the vocals in their reimagining of the Fleetwood Mac classic.  

Welsh weather presenter Owain Wyn Evans dropped into the studio following his incredible 24-hour drum-a-thon, with the TV star left speechless after learning he’d raised over £3million for charity. 

Lovely: Alex teamed her dress with a matching black choker and an array of dazzling jewellery, while her raven locks were swept up into a high, curly ponytail

Lovely: Alex teamed her dress with a matching black choker and an array of dazzling jewellery, while her raven locks were swept up into a high, curly ponytail

Hosts with the most: Graham and Mel were on hand to host the show

Hosts with the most: Graham and Mel were on hand to host the show

Dynamic trio: Alex was also joined by Ade and Chris to front the bumper telethon

Dynamic trio: Alex was also joined by Ade and Chris to front the bumper telethon

Elsewhere, things got tense as BBC stars Sam and Mark took part in a special version of The Wall, hosted by Danny Dyer.

Though the presenters answered their questions with ease, they didn’t have much luck with the balls. However, EastEnders star Danny soon raised their spirts (and their prize money) as he trebled their total, with the duo earning a whopping £23,109 for charity.

The annual Children In Need telethon takes place every November, with organisers asking people to donate to disadvantaged children and young people in the UK. 

Simon Antrobus, Chief Executive at BBC Children In Need said: ‘As a result of the current crisis, children and young people across the UK are living through extraordinary times, the world they knew will have changed beyond recognition.

‘That’s why the work of the charities and projects BBC Children in Need funds is so important – now more than ever. 

The name's Pudsey: The evening's show was kicked off by lovable bear Pudsey channelling his inner James Bond as he made a showstopping entrance via speedboat

The name’s Pudsey: The evening’s show was kicked off by lovable bear Pudsey channelling his inner James Bond as he made a showstopping entrance via speedboat

Uh oh: However, the Children In Need icon was left shaken and stirred when bouncers Shaun Ryder and Bez of Happy Monday's grilled him at the door

Uh oh: However, the Children In Need icon was left shaken and stirred when bouncers Shaun Ryder and Bez of Happy Monday’s grilled him at the door

Look who it is: Meanwhile, England captain Harry Kane made a brief appearance as he played a touch of football with Pudsey

Look who it is: Meanwhile, England captain Harry Kane made a brief appearance as he played a touch of football with Pudsey

‘This wonderful shared act of kindness between the great British public, our Corporate Partners, and the charities we support, all so brilliantly led by the BBC, really will change young lives.’

Singer Sophie Ellis Bexter, 42, has already raised more than £1 million after completing a 24-hour Kitchen Disco danceathon.

The pop star became known for her Kitchen Discos after performing from home with her family in a bid to raise spirits during lockdown last year.

This week she took to the stage at the BBC Radio Theatre in London at 9.25am on Wednesday, changing costumes a number of times within the 24 hours.

She was joined by a number of her famous friends, both virtually and in person, including Spice Girl Mel C, Strictly Come Dancing’s Ian Waite and the twinkle-toed Aljaz Skorjanec, as well as TOWIE’s Gemma Collins and Australian singer Natalie Imbruglia.

She ended her performance with ABBA’s Dancing Queen, and later tweeted: ‘I should’ve done “Crying at the Discoteque” – I can’t stop crying.’

Sophie told Zoe Ball on the BBC Radio 2 breakfast show: ‘What a team, thank you so much. I’ve been so well supported.’ 

Opening act: Ed Sheeran was on hand to provide the entertainment early on in the show, with a thrilling performance of his single Overpass Graffiti

Opening act: Ed Sheeran was on hand to provide the entertainment early on in the show, with a thrilling performance of his single Overpass Graffiti

Fun times: While Clare Balding hosted a school sports day with a difference with a plethora of Olympic athletes competing in activities including the egg and spoon race and tug-of-war

Fun times: While Clare Balding hosted a school sports day with a difference with a plethora of Olympic athletes competing in activities including the egg and spoon race and tug-of-war

Ooh I say! Fans were given an eyeful as Olympic diver and I'm A Celebrity contestant Matty Lee stripped down to his speedos (and a scarf knitted by Tom Daley) for the egg and spoon race

Ooh I say! Fans were given an eyeful as Olympic diver and I’m A Celebrity contestant Matty Lee stripped down to his speedos (and a scarf knitted by Tom Daley) for the egg and spoon race

The yearly event was launched in 1980 and has raised more than £1 billion since it began.

Despite the challenges of the pandemic last year, Children In Need raised £57million in total.

It was hosted by Alex Scott and comedian Chris Ramsey in an audience-free studio, marking the 40th anniversary of the programme.

They were joined by a number of celebrity guests, including sportsman Joe Wicks who raised £2,248,479 in his huge 24-hour PE challenge. 

Duo: Elsewhere, fans were treated to a special performance of the official 2021 Children In Needed single Everywhere, with Niall Horan and Anne-Marie providing the vocals in their reimagining of the Fleetwood Mac classic

Duo: Elsewhere, fans were treated to a special performance of the official 2021 Children In Needed single Everywhere, with Niall Horan and Anne-Marie providing the vocals in their reimagining of the Fleetwood Mac classic

A spectacular grand total of £37,032,789 was donated by the public during the telethon.

In total, 2,700 grants were awarded to the value of £37 million, supporting local charities and projects affecting children and young people.

In 2019, the public donated nearly £48 million but the biggest years were 2017 and 2018, when more than £50 million was raised on the night and £60 million was raised in total.

Donations can be made via the Children In Need website or by phone on 0345 7 33 22 33 in England, or 0345 607 0011 in Wales.

Brilliant: Singer Sophie Ellis Bexter, 42, has already raised more than £1 million after completing a 24-hour Kitchen Disco danceathon

Brilliant: Singer Sophie Ellis Bexter, 42, has already raised more than £1 million after completing a 24-hour Kitchen Disco danceathon

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk