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Little Mix star serenades Dan Walker as he becomes unwell on Kilimanjaro climb

Dan Walker (Tom Dymond/BBC)
Dan Walker (Tom Dymond/BBC)

Little Mix’s Jade Thirlwall serenaded fellow climber Dan Walker while he suffered altitude sickness during their ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro.

The pair are part of a group of nine celebrities who are trying to conquer the 19,000ft mountain for Comic Relief.

On day five, BBC Breakfast presenter Walker suffered a bout of altitude sickness, but said he was saved by Thirlwall.

He said: “I had really bad altitude sickness but Jade, even though I can’t quite remember it, sang Africa by Toto to me, and she gave me a strawberry lace!

“She saved me!”

The singer said: “His altitude sickness put him in a weird mood and he joked that I was a rubbish singer!

“Ha, luckily I wasn’t too offended. I forgave him because I knew he was unwell.”

The group also includes Thirlwall’s bandmate Leigh-Anne Pinnock, Strictly’s Shirley Ballas, Love Island’s Dani Dyer, presenters Anita Rani and Alexander Armstrong, former shadow chancellor Ed Balls and sports pundit Osi Umenyiora.

Professor Greg Whyte, who is climbing with the group said: “We’re at 4,000 metres now which is about 13,000 ft, and of course that has a profound effect on the body.

“It’s mentally where it really does take the pressure, and what it does is it heightens emotions and we see that with the guys here. We see people breaking into tears at the slightest thing because the emotions are so affected.”

Ballas said she has formed a strong bond with Umenyiora as the terrain has been getting tougher.

“From the very beginning I felt safe with Osi at the back because I slipped so many times, he saved my life – I’m not joking!” she said.

“It just feels good having him beside me.”

Umenyiora called the Strictly Come Dancing judge “my absolute girl!”

“When we first had a conversation, I thought wow!” he said.

“I really like this young lady, we’re going to have a connection. I told her I was going to have to her back, and I have had her back ever since!”

The ascent is being documented for a special documentary to air on BBC One.

Red Nose Day 2019 is on March 15.

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