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Ultra Events smashes £30m charity fundraising target

Ultra Events smashes £30m charity fundraising target

A company that helps adventurous people fulfil life-affirming ambitions while raising money for charity has hit its much-anticipated £30m fundraising target.

Derby-based Ultra Events, which operates across the UK, from Exeter to Inverness and Norwich to Belfast, has achieved its magic milestone in just nine years. 

The firm lays on ‘experience’ events including white collar boxing, mixed martial arts (MMA), ballroom dancing, mountain climbing and stand-up comedy, and provides participants with eight weeks of free training prior to their event.

More than 150,000 individuals have taken up the challenges since Ultra Events launched in 2009, with formal tracking of fundraising starting in 2014.

Now that the firm’s original £30m target has been surpassed this week, participants can raise money for any charity of choice.    

Ultra Events Jon Leonard said:

“We are so proud to have facilitated donations of such a massive amount in such a short space of time. 

“At the same time, we have provided an outlet for thousands of people to fulfil their dreams, maybe get fit in the process and all the while doing it for a good cause.

“Participants can choose their own charity to raise funds for, so we will hopefully support even more worthy causes and bring even more adventurous people on board.”

The most popular challenge is the Ultra White Collar Boxing (UWCB) programme, where participants receive eight weeks of intensive training followed by a nerve-wracking fight night in a boxing arena, taking on other Ultra Events challengers.

UWCB is followed by MMA, ballroom dancing and stand-up comedy in the popularity stakes. Participation in many of the events, particularly ballroom dancing, was badly affected by the Covid pandemic, which makes the firm’s fundraising achievement even more spectacular. 

The most amount raising at a single event was £67,087 at a London UWCB event in 2019, while the record amount of funds raised through Ultra Events in a single day has topped £100,000.

The highest individual fundraisers over the years include Mark Solan, from Durham, who raised more than £22,000 for his UWCB challenge in 2015, while Derby’s Steph Snooks has so far raised over £20,000 for her UWCB event that’s due to take place in October.

This week’s £30m target has been achieved by the contingent of participants who are currently fundraising for their forthcoming challenges at around 160 events across the UK this autumn and winter.

“It’s a case of scale,” said Jon. “Most people raise a few hundred pounds, which all adds up to create an amazing sum. 

“We’re blown away that we’ve managed to change so many people’s lives and enable them to do things that they otherwise would never have been brave enough to attempt.

“So, whether you want to be punched in the face, kicked in the leg, trip over your two left feet or make an audience laugh, we’ve pretty much got it covered. 

“Everyone is pushed out of their comfort zone, but not a single person has regretted taking up their challenge over the years.”

To discover more about Ultra Events, visit

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