MEMBERS of the Trowbridge Wessex Mead Rotary Club are to stage a gala dinner dance to help raise funds for this year's BBC Children in Need Appeal.

Andy Barlow and Caroline Christopher, both past presidents of the club, posed with a collection of old Pudsey Bears to promote the event.

The dinner dance is being staged at The Civic Centre in Trowbridge on Friday, November 15 at 7 for 7.30pm on the same evening at the BBC1 TV screens its annual Children in Need fundraising programme.

Mr Barlow said: "We've already sold more than 130 tickets but are hoping for a sold-out event. We're hoping to raise more than £2,500 for the appeal."

Meanwhile, BBC Wiltshire staff will be attempting to pull a giant Great Bustard bird around five Wiltshire towns and cities - Trowbridge, Swindon, Chippenham, Malmesbury and Salisbury – in the run up to the 2019 appeal.

The giant replica of the iconic Wiltshire bird will be attached to a trailer and hand-pulled 50 miles, over five days, by a team of staff including breakfast show presenter Ben Prater.

Taking place from Monday to Friday, November 11-15, the team will visit schools, businesses and town centres where locals will be encouraged to ‘Stuff the Bustard’ with money to raise funds for BBC Children in Need.

The BBC Wiltshire team will be in Trowbridge on Monday, Swindon on Tuesday, Chippenham on Wednesday, Malmesbury on Thursday and Salisbury on Friday.

Mr Prater said: “The team can’t wait to get going with the fundraising challenge for BBC Children in Need!

"Our giant Great Bustard will be pulled 50 miles around five towns and cities in Wiltshire and we will be encouraging locals along the way to help us raise funds by filling it with cash."

“Not only will this challenge support this year’s BBC Children in Need Appeal, we also hope it will inspire children and schools across the area to learn about the volunteers who have worked hard to ensure one hundred Great Bustards are now back living in the Wiltshire landscape after the bird was hunted to extinction – we are all delighted it has returned.”

Supporting BBC Children in Need this year will help fund even more projects like Wiltshire Portage which benefits from a three-year grant of £30,000 to provide outreach support to families with pre-school children experiencing developmental delays and difficulties.

Through the programme of play-based activities children are supported to improve their social and communication skills whilst having fun and making friends.

The BBC Children in Need Appeal supports ten projects across Wiltshire with funding of more than £449,000.

To buy tickets for the Trowbridge Wessex Mead Rotary Club dinner dance, contact Caroline Christopher on by Friday, October 25.