MORE than £20,000 for charity was raised when two Dorset companies held a Christmas lunch at the Hilton Bournemouth.

Bournemouth-based IT consultancy QuoStar joined Poole professional services firm Inspire for the event, which attracted 170 guests.

Money went to Poole children’s hospice Julia’s House; Lewis-Manning Hospice; MyTIME, which provides respite breaks for young carers; and Wessex Cancer Trust.

As well as ticket sales, money flowed in from a raffle and charity auction, where high-ticket prizes included a signed AFC Bournemouth shirt and ball, a one-week stay in a luxury Swiss ski chalet and an Isle of Wight flying experience.

Quostar managing director James Stelfox said: “The lunch was a great success, and QuoStar and Inspire would like to thank all the local business people who attended and donated so generously. “This is the third year we have run this event, and it’s great to see more people getting involved and higher levels of funds being raised year on year. It’s certainly a very enjoyable way to kick off the festive period, and we were pleased to be able to raise such a large amount in support of four local charities.”

Inspire’s managing director, Warren Munson, said: “It has been great to work with QuoStar once again to jointly host the charity Christmas lunch. To raise such a considerable amount of money through the generosity of local business owners and directors each year is a great achievement and it has been fantastic to be able to support four great charities as a result.”