BBC Children In Need’s chief executive has told of his disappointment that the charity’s new album has been removed from the race to number one in the charts.

Got It Covered, a collection of covers featuring the vocals of Olivia Colman and David Tennant among others, was quietly pulled from the main album chart by the Official Charts Company on Wednesday after it was deemed more suitable for the Official Compilations Chart.

The album had been on course to top the main chart in the Official Chart Company’s mid-week update, as on Monday it had a lead of nearly 4,000 sales ahead of its closest competitor.

Children In Need Got It Covered album
Olivia Colman features on Children In Need: Got It Covered (BBC/Ray Burmiston)

Simon Antrobus, chief executive of BBC Children In Need, said: “I’m deeply saddened that the industry has chosen to pull the album from the number one race after announcing it was well on its way to securing the top spot this week.

“Got It Covered is the result of an inspiring collaboration by some of the UK’s biggest stars in support of disadvantaged children and young people and this very special project has clearly captured the public’s imagination.

“It’s sad that a charity album solely for the benefit of children should be denied the chance for further promotion and celebration which inevitably would lead to more money being raised.”

The BBC said in a statement: “This is extremely disappointing, we know many of the contributors are also saddened by the news.

“It’s important to remember what this album is about; helping the lives of disadvantaged children in need.

“The public have been buying the album in huge volumes and that should be recognised. They should think again.”

An Official Charts Company spokeswoman said: “We understand and sympathise with Children In Need’s concerns that their album will no longer feature in the UK’s artist albums chart.

“The album is on course to take the number one spot on the compilation albums chart and be the biggest selling album of the week – which is a huge achievement, while raising money for such a deserving cause.

“Got It Covered was described to us pre-release as an artist album, but on release it was clear that it was a various artists compilation, as it is widely credited as across retail and music services.

“We are sorry this fact was not picked up sooner, and we are huge supporters of all the incredible and important work Children In Need do and would urge everyone to continue to go out and buy the album.”

Colman and Tennant are joined by the likes of Helena Bonham Carter, Jodie Whittaker and Suranne Jones on the album, a collection of covers ranging from Coldplay’s Yellow to Taylor Swift’s Never Grow Up.

The stars united in a bid to make a positive difference to the lives of disadvantaged children and young people across the UK, with all profits from the album going to BBC Children In Need.

The 11-track charity album – recorded at Abbey Road Studios – was initially leading the race to number one in the charts ahead of From Out Of Nowhwhere, the new album from Jeff Lynne’s ELO, at number two, and British soul singer Michael Kiwanuka’s third album Kiwanuka at number three.

The news was first reported by Music Week, who quoted the Official Charts Company as saying: “Having reviewed the product, it was felt that its rightful home was in the Official Compilations Chart.”