A BLACK tie dinner and auction has raised £43,000 for Britain’s leading wildlife research charity.

The North Yorkshire committee of the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT) held the sell-out dinner at Swinton Park Hotel, Masham, to raise funds for the charity’s ground-breaking research.

A sumptuous gamethemed dinner created by award-winning chef Simon Crannage, accompanied by Bon Coeur’s fine wines, was followed by a talk from Ian Coghill, GWCT chairman.

Lots in the charity auction – conducted by Andrew Fallows, a partner at Carter Jonas, one of the sponsors of the event – included a private tour of the Laurent Perrier vineyard and cellar, and the chance to enjoy its range of champagnes over lunch.

But the highlight of the evening was the High Four Pheasant day donated by the Reeve family, the Hon Jake Duncombe, Christopher Blundell and Lord Mexborough.

The opportunity to shoot on four of Yorkshire’s premier pheasant shoots – Urra, Helmsley, Murton Grange and Hawnby – all on the same day attracted frantic bidding.

The day, which includes dinner provided by the Black Swan, Helmsley, and wine by Bon Coeur Fine Wine, eventually went for £20,000.

The Yorkshire committee plans further events, including shoot walks. For details, contact Sophie Dingwall on 01677-460033 or e-mail her at sdingwall@ gwct.org.uk.