AS the BBC's seven-hour charity extravaganza netted Children in Need a whopping £17.2 million, Pudsey's South Lakeland pals dug deep during a number of events, reports Ellie Hargreaves.

From eye-watering leg-waxings and fundraising fish, to fancy dress frivolities and high jinx on the high street, on Friday big-hearted businesses and munificent members of the public raised hundreds of thousands for the charity which helps disadvantaged young people.

With organisers of the 26th national appeal predicting more than £30 million of donations to roll in over the next few weeks, fundraisers closer to home are still counting the cash which will help provide a better life for the scores of underprivileged children living in the UK.

A £60,000 wedge was presented to the famous face of the campaign, Terry Wogan himself, by a representative of Lakeland Limited on the night and staff are hoping to top the £110,615 they handed over last year.

Male staff at Kendal's ASDA store battled through the pain barrier as beauty therapy students from Kendal College liberated their lower limbs with a sponsored de-fuzzing, while shoppers indulging in manicures and treatments from the students all added to the £2,000 pot the supermarket filled.

She may only be 10-years-old but Windermere Junior School pupil Abi Trippitt (pictured below right) masterminded a disco to raise money for the needy. As well as making posters, organising refreshments and collecting from patrons in her parent's pub (The Royal Oak in Bowness), the kind-hearted youngster roped in the help of four friends to host a disco for 180 schoolfriends raising £730 in the process. Her mum, Angie Trippitt, said pub staff had also donated the weekend's tips to the appeal.

"Abi has been a busy little bee. She organised everything herself and we're really proud of her," said mum.

Swapping neatly pressed suits for fancy dress, Temple Heelis solicitors staff wowed customers in Windermere and Kendal with everything from St Trinnian's outfits to vicar's dog-collars to raise £100 in donations which the firm has pledged to match.

Meanwhile, acting as a collecting agency for the appeal, the Yorkshire Building Society branches invited staff to dress-down for a mufty' day. With the help of branches in Kendal and Windermere they raised £17,223. Fellow bankers at NatWest followed suit and donned dinner jackets and party dresses for the day, doubling the donations of the public through the company's Community CashBack fund.

Almost £30,000 was given by users of HSBC's cash machines following the introduction of an on-the-spot, finger-punching fundraising idea which allows customers to give anything from £1 to £1 million straight from their account.

As well as flogging a new range of Pudsey bear products (everyday items from biscuit cutters to aprons raised a staggering £60,000) home and kitchen-ware giants Lakeland Limited whose former director, the late Michelle Kershaw, was a trustee of Children in Need went ahead with a number of money-spinners on Friday.

The sale of Pudsey muffins and a share of profits from the Windermere branch caf pulled in £450 while staff themselves raised nearly £4,200. Lakeland's spokesperson Barbara Shepherd said staff had also manned an official Children in Need call-centre taking £41,000 in public donations on the night.

"We are absolutely thrilled with the money raised. The total will continue to grow for some weeks as more products are sold and more money comes rolling in from other stores throughout the country. We had a fantastic night, the atmosphere here was electric."

A giant fish was the unlikely figure netting donations for needy kids over at Lakeside's Aquarium of the Lakes. The slippery eight-foot sea-creature, which was created by schoolchildren during October half-term, invited generous passers-by to drop donations into a large net.

Meanwhile, year six pupils at Dean Gibson School in Kendal spent an afternoon baking buns. They held a fayre in the school hall, selling their cakes, toys and setting up games and competitions. The rest of the school spent their money during the morning, and parishioners from Holy Trinity and St George parish also baked cakes. Parents donated ingredients for the cakes and goods to sell.

Class teacher Janette Borodin said: "This has been an excellent opportunity for the children to understand about resourcefulness, commitment, working as a team and organising themselves in an enterprising way."

If you would like to donate towards the cause, it's not too late. Donations can be made by calling 0845-7332233 or you can find out how to give via the post, bank or Post Office by visiting the appeal website at