Children in Need: Doctor Who's companion to be revealed live on BBC fundraiser

2 months ago 31

Ncuti Gatwa

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Ncuti Gatwa is due to take over the time-travelling Tardis over the festive period in 2023

By Helen Bushby

Entertainment and arts reporter

A companion for Ncuti Gatwa's time-travelling Doctor Who is to be announced live on this year's Children in Need show later.

Gatwa is due to become the 15th Doctor over the festive period in 2023, and will have just one companion for his adventures on the BBC One show.

Lewis Capaldi, Graham Norton, Joe Wicks, Bradley Walsh and Diversity will also appear on the charity night.

Ex-Strictly stars Maisie Smith and John Waite are going on Blankety Blank.

Freya Skye, the UK's Junior Eurovision act, will perform her song live for the first time at the Salford-based event.

DJ Scott Mills has already raised more than £1m for this year's appeal through a gruelling treadmill challenge.

The Radio 2 presenter walked, jogged and ran for 24 hours - even recreating his infamous Strictly Come Dancing "crab dance".

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Scott Mills, with Melanie C after completing his Great Scott TreadMills Challenge

Friday's three-hour show will be hosted by Ade Adepitan, Mel Giedroyc, Chris Ramsey, Alex Scott and Jason Manford.

Manford, who is co-presenting the annual event for the first time, said: "Being from an underprivileged background, to help a charity that helps those children, means a lot to me".

Giedroyc highlighted "so many children facing the very real crisis of poverty this winter", and Adepitan said it would be "a really emotional night with a lot of powerful stories".

Last year's show raised £39m for children and young people across the UK.

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The show's hosts will be Jason Manford, Mel Giedroyc, Alex Scott, Ade Adepitan and Chris Ramsey

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A Walk with Joe event in Maidenhead was held on 5 November

Friday will also see Wicks walk a 30-mile ultra-marathon, aiming to finish in 10 hours to join the evening's show. He will meet drag queens, athletes, actors and fellow broadcasters along the way.

"I wanted to do as much as I could for the charity again this year, especially given how hard things are for so many children and young people in the UK right now," he said.

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Children in Need: 'My disability won't stop me having fun'

The Repair Shop team will reveal the results of a special restoration, while Romesh Ranganathan will host a charity edition of The Weakest Link.

Norton's Big Red Chair is returning, while the Children in Need Choir will sing Keane's Somewhere Only We Know.

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Pudsey Bear is BBC Children in Need's much-loved mascot

Fundraising events to have been broadcast already include Matt Baker's Rickshaw Relay, along with a team of five young people, all of whom have been supported by Children in Need-funded projects.

DIY SOS built a brand-new home for Leeds-based CiN-funded project Getaway Girls, which saw Nick Knowles and his team work alongside Radio 2 presenters and a group of volunteers.

The BBC Children in Need Appeal Night Show will be on BBC One and iPlayer from 19:00 to 22:00 GMT.

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