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Celebrity DJs help radio auction raise over £3m for tsunami aid

Key points

• Prime Minister joins special radio show to raise money for tsunami appeal

• By 6pm UK Radio Aid raised more than 3 million for the appeal

• 268 commercial stations suspended broadcasting to air the appeal

Story in full CELEBRITIES and public figures including the Prime Minister, Tony Blair, and the Duke of York turned DJ yesterday to help raise more than 3 million for the victims of the Asian tsunami.

The Oasis frontman Liam Gallagher and Sharon Osbourne were among showbusiness stars who took to the airwaves for UK Radio Aid - a 12-hour fund-raising marathon.

By 6pm over 3 million had been donated as the famous faces offered treasured possessions and exclusive treats for auction.

An estimated 26 million people listened at some point during the day, which saw Mr Blair join the maverick presenter Chris Evans, who was making his radio comeback three and a half years after being sacked from Virgin Radio.

Looking a little bemused hunched in front of a microphone, Mr Blair spoke of the devastation caused by the Boxing Day tsunami and donated a tour of Downing Street followed by a cup of tea with him. Bids for the experience have already reached 11,100.

A total of 268 commercial radio stations suspended their individual programming for the broadcast at the Capital Radio studios in London’s Leicester Square.

Celebrities poured in throughout the day, including Jamelia, Louise Redknapp, the operatic foursome Il Divo and the pop group Texas.

EastEnders’ Shane Ritchie and Jason Donovan as well as the singer Russell Watson turned up.

Prince Andrew, who appeared relaxed and chatty as he sat in for a half an hour of the programme, offered two tickets to this year’s Ascot races in York, including access to the Royal enclosure.

"This has never been offered before and it is unlikely that it will ever be offered again," he said.

Osbourne put forward a platinum and diamond ring and necklace for auction - a recent Christmas present from her husband.

 
 
 

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