Some 85 guests enjoyed a private tour by tractor and trailer around the Elmley Bird Reserve on the Isle of Sheppey in Kent.
Reserve owner Philip Merricks and son-in-law Gareth gave an informative commentary during the 90 minute tour, covering 3,000 acres.
There are four hides at the centre, each offering different views and wildlife viewing opportunities. The first hide is an open air screen on the sea wall to view rafts of wildfowl and roosting wader on the Swale. Wellmarsh, Counterwall and South Fleet hides are all a mile further on. They overlook shallow pools which can be filled with thousands of wading birds. At the far end of the reserve, the remote Spitend Hide is a remote and tranquil spot.
The tour was followed by a hog roast in a beautiful traditional barn, with fresh strawberries donated by William Pierce.
Thanks to the Merricks family for hosting and Robert and Donna Pickard from the Kent committee for arranging the event. An auction helped boost the sum raised to more than £1,600.