A BUSINESSMAN who turned his back on city life for the Yorkshire Dales has raised an egg-cellent amount for charity through his pet hens.

When 51-year-old Jonathan Greenwood became tired of his commute to Leeds city centre, he decided to ditch the city life for a more peaceful and existence in the Yorkshire Dales.

Shortly after moving to Leyburn in October 2018, he fulfilled a childhood dream by purchasing some chickens.

He was also introduced to a local volunteer group that helps raise funds for Yorkshire Cancer Research.

This is when the idea of giving away eggs in return for donations to the charity struck him and he began promoting his new life and his fundraising venture through an Instagram account.

It quickly took off and just over a year later, Mr Greenwood now has more than 2,000 followers who travel from far and wide to pick a box of his renowned eggs.

And his scheme has raised around £3,500 for Yorkshire Cancer Research so far.

Mr Greenwood said: “Everywhere you go there’s somebody shaking a charity box.

"I wanted to find a more creative way of raising funds for a good cause.”

Yorkshire Cancer Research is a charity close to Mr Greenwood’s heart.

He lost his mother-in-law to bowel cancer in 2008 and then four years later his father Keith to pancreatic cancer.

Following his move to Leyburn, his aunt was diagnosed with cancer in her throat.

This all made him even more determined to raise as much as possible to help fund new research and services in Yorkshire.

Following the success of his eggs, he decided to start hatching chickens to increase his flock and grow donations.

He moved a batch of hens to a smallholding in West Burton, where they are looked after by a friend.

Every week Mr Greenwood takes the eggs to Russell Home Interiors and Gifts in Leyburn, for their customers.

Mr Greenwood is a member of the East Witton Male Voice Choir which is also raising funds for Yorkshire Cancer Research as its chosen charity.

Mr Greenwood said: “Fundraising for Yorkshire Cancer Research has been a mutually beneficial experience.

"Not only has it helped raise my spirits and improve my mental health following the loss of several close family members, I’ve also been able to raise important funds to help the charity do the amazing work they do.”