‘Game’ celebrities raise bus-load of cash for charity

10 November 2009

Famous British faces up and down the country got their game on in the‘PopCap Celebrity Play-Offs’ recently, to raise a whopping£7,000 for BBC Children In Need...and counting!

The national tour, organised by PopCap.com, was launched in London by singer-turned-celebrity-chef Liz McClarnon and travelled to Welcome Break locations across the UK. BBC Children in Need’s Pudsey Bear was joined each day by celebrities from the local area who challenged the public to climb aboard the bus and beat their top score on PopCap’s latest game Zuma’s Revenge! Hundreds of children (and their mums, dads, and even grans) hopped on board to play the game and try their best to beat the celeb!

The‘PopCap Celebrity Play-Offs’ national tour kicked-off on Monday 26 October in Bristol with Casualty actor James Redmond, followed by Birmingham with CBBC presenters Sam&Mark. The tour then moved to Keele with Big Brother’s Sam and Amanda, Leicester with snooker player Mark Selby (AKA the‘Jester from Leicester’), Sheffield with TV presenter Charlie Webster and Huddersfield with Emmerdale actor James Hooton, coming to a final stop in Chorley on Sunday 1 November 2009.

TV presenter Charlie Webster was the overall Zuma’s Revenge! Celebrity Champion with a whopping 180,220 points - the highest score of all the celebrities and members of the public. While Casualty actor James Redmond came bottom of the celebrity leader board - and was even beaten by members of the public - he succeeded in raising the most cash for BBC Children in Need at the Bristol‘PopCap Celebrity Play-offs’!

The all-important results…

Celebrity Champion!

Charlie Webster, TV presenter

180,220 points

Celebrity that needs most practice

James Redmond, Casualty actor

42,000 points

Highest scoring area

Huddersfield

102,960 points

Lowest scoring area

Sheffield

37,800 points

Most money raised in…

Bristol

Award for best MOP (Most Outrageous Player) goes to…

Sam&Mark, CBBC presenters, for entertaining Birmingham with their wacky and wonderful ways!

“This is a fantastic way to raise money for Children in Need”, said Sam and Mark as they battled with kids in Birmingham to set the top score.“It’s really brings the fun element into fundraising and it’s brilliant for the kids to get involved. Zuma’s Revenge! is wicked– we absolutely love it and can’t stop playing it!”

All monies raised go towards BBC Children in Need in advance of the live Appeal show on 20 November 2009. These crucial pennies raised for BBC Children in Need will improve the lives of disadvantaged children and young people across the UK.

Zuma’s Revenge! Is the newest game in the PopCap.com portfolio. The player takes the role of a fearless ball-shooting frog, exploring ancient temples and ruins. By firing coloured spheres into an advancing chain of balls to make matches of three or more, the frog blasts his way through a series of arcade challenges. Visit www.popcap.com where you can play a free trial of Zuma’s Revenge! And try out lots of other free games. Remember PopCap games are not just for kids. In fact the majority of players at PopCap.com are over 30 and female and say playing helps reduce stress and exercise the mind.

Those people who couldn’t attend the‘PopCap Celebrity Play-offs’ tour, but would still like to show their support for BBC Children in Need (and their favourite local celebrity) can log onto the following just giving sites to donate:

• James Redmond: http://www.justgiving.com/PopCap-jamesredmond

• Sam&Mark: http://www.justgiving.com/PopCap-SamandMark

• Sam&Amanda: http://www.justgiving.com/PopCap-SamandAmanda

• Charlie Webster: http://www.justgiving.com/PopCap-charliewebster

• James Hooton: http://www.justgiving.com/PopCap-jameshooton

• Mark Selby, the‘Jester from Leicester’: http://www.justgiving.com/PopCap-MarkSelby

ENDS

For images, information, game samples, case studies or images please contact Holly Blake, Beth Robinson, Sylvia Palamoudian, Sarah Egerton or Lily Pickard at Focus PR: popcap@focuspr.co.uk or 020 7845 6600

Notes to editors:

About PopCap

PopCap Games ( www.popcap.com) is the leading multi-platform provider of fun, easy-to-learn, captivating video games that appeal to everyone from age 6 to 106. Based in Seattle, Washington, PopCap was founded in 2000 and has a worldwide staff of over 240 people in Seattle, San Francisco, Chicago, Vancouver, B.C., Dublin, and Shanghai. Its games have been downloaded more than 1 billion times by consumers worldwide, and its flagship title, Bejeweled®, has sold more than 25 million units across all platforms. Constantly acclaimed by consumers and critics, PopCap’s games are played on the Web, desktop computers, myriad mobile devices (cell phones, smartphones, PDAs, Pocket PCs, iPod, iPhone and more), popular game consoles (such as Xbox and DS), and in-flight entertainment systems. PopCap is the only“casual games” developer with leading market share across all major sales channels, including Web portals, retail stores, mobile phones, MP3 players, and game devices.

BBC Children in Need

The BBC Children in Need Appeal is a charity registered in England and Wales (802052) and Scotland (SC039557) whose aim is to make a positive change to the lives of disadvantaged children and young people across the UK.

In 2008, The BBC Children in Need Appeal raised a massive£38 million, with a record-breaking on-the-night total of£20, 991,216. The next BBC Children in Need Appeal will take place on 20 November 2009.

Thanks to public donations and the amazing efforts of fundraisers, schools, businesses and corporate partners over the last 30 years, over half a billion has been raised towards helping to make a positive change the lives of disadvantaged children and young people across the country.

BBC Children in Need awards grants to organisations working with children aged 18 and under who have mental, physical or sensory disabilities; behavioural or psychological disorders; are living in poverty or situations of deprivation; or suffering distress, abuse or neglect.

For every penny donated to the charity, a penny goes directly to a project. The charity is able to make this promise because it uses its investment income to cover all operational costs.

For more information please visit bbc.co.uk/pudsey

Welcome Break

Welcome Break currently operates 24 sites across the UK. The company offers motorists services, good and amenities including fuel, restaurants, retail shopping, rest areas, leisure facilities and overnight accommodation.

2009 is the third year Welcome Break has exclusively supported BBC Children in Need. In 2007, Welcome Break raised over£67,000 for BBC Children in Need. In 2008, Welcome Break handed over£174,000 to the charity.

A full list of Welcome Break's sites can be found at www.welcomebreak.co.uk

For further information about Welcome Break, please contact: Matt King on 07825 057545 or matt.king@welcomebreak.co.uk

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