When is Red Nose Day 2024? Sir Lenny Henry to host Comic Relief event for the last time

Sir Lenny Henry will host Red Nose Day for the last time this year  (PA Media)
Sir Lenny Henry will host Red Nose Day for the last time this year (PA Media)

Sir Lenny Henry will host Comic Relief for the last time in the spring when Red Nose Day returns.

The comedian and co-founder of the charity, 65, said it was time for “new faces” after nearly 40 years of hosting.

“When we first started Comic Relief back in 1985, I never dreamed we’d still be here today," Sir Lenny said. "I thought we’d probably do three shows and that would be it, but fast forward nearly 40 years, and that enthusiasm and determination to step up and help others has never wavered.”

“As life president of Comic Relief, I’m excited to see some new and familiar faces come forward now to present the big night and lead us into the next chapter."

He gave a separate interview to the Standard about his seminal move, and discussed his possible successors as host.

Actors Jonathan Bailey and Dame Joan Collins, as well as TV personalities Gemma Collins, Davina McCall, and Alison Hammond, will star in a brand-new Comic Relief sketch on Red Nose Day 2024.

In 2023, Red Nose Day raised a staggering £35.3 million.

Here’s all you need to know about the charity event.

What is Red Nose Day?

Red Nose Day is the highlight of Comic Relief, the British charity founded in 1985 by comedy scriptwriter Richard Curtis and Sir Lenny. Comic Relief aims to address poverty and social injustice, both in the UK and worldwide, through the use of humour and entertainment to raise funds.

Many people, schools, workplaces, and communities across the UK engage in various fundraising activities on Red Nose Day. These include themed events, challenges, and charity concerts, while there are also televised comedy shows.

The sale of small, red plastic noses is a distinctive feature of Red Nose Day. The funds raised are used to support a wide range of charitable projects. These include those focused on poverty alleviation, education, and health care in the UK and internationally.

Comic Relief 2023 presenters from left, Joel Dommett, AJ Odudu, Paddy McGuinness, David Tennant and Zoe Ball (PA Media)
Comic Relief 2023 presenters from left, Joel Dommett, AJ Odudu, Paddy McGuinness, David Tennant and Zoe Ball (PA Media)

The first Red Nose Day in 1988 raised a whopping £15 million for Comic Relief.

More than 30 million people tuned in to watch Blackadder the Cavalier Years’ and the Young Ones on University Challenge in the televised event on BBC One.

Many celebrities, such as comic greats Dawn French, Kathy Burke, Catherine Tate and Jennifer Saunders, have taken part in hilarious spoofs over the decades.

Johnny Depp, Alan Partridge, the Spice Girls and Sir Elton John have also featured to help raise millions of pounds for charitable causes. These include Age UK, Alzheimer’s Society, Children in Need, Mental Health Foundation, Mind, Coram, The Children’s Society, Catch22 and Porchlight

When is Red Nose Day 2024?

Red Nose Day 2024 takes place on Friday, March 15.

BBC One will broadcast a special show that evening featuring a host of stars, live music, exclusive prizes, comedy and much more.

Before this, Comic Relief - Live at The London Palladium will take place on Monday, February 26. This will feature comedians including Aisling Bea, Joel Dommett, Fatiha El-Ghorri, Rosie Jones, Sara Pascoe and Mawaan Rizwan.

Where to buy noses for Red Nose Day 2024

The red nose has undergone a makeover for 2024. Comic Relief has designed four new red noses to collect, as well as a return of the limited-edition Rare ‘Gold’ Nose.

The noses are all made from plant-based materials and can be recycled at home.

They are on sale at Comic Relief and Amazon. If you want to buy one urgently, Amazon offers next-day delivery.

Famous faces have already donned their charity noses, including comedian and actress Jayde Adams and actor Tommy Jessop.

“In my experience, during good times and bad - laughter is always the best way to do anything in your life and it’s the only way to get people motivated and it’s lush that I’m a part of the Red Nose Day crew again,” Adams said.

For more information about Red Nose Day 2024, visit the official website here.