Auction offers high tea with Downton Abbey’s Lord Grantham

Actor Hugh Bonneville is the prize in an auction to raise money for a New Zealand children's hospital charity

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Fancy taking High Tea with Downton Abbey’s Lord Grantham? Then all you need is $2,580 New Zealand dollars (around £1,317) and a plane ticket to Auckland.

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An online auction is offering fans of the period drama the chance to claim the rather civilised prize as part of a “60-minute meet & greet” with Downton star Hugh Bonneville in Auckland later this month.

Bonneville himself has been tweeting a link to the auction – described as a “money-can’t-buy opportunity” – with the highest bid currently standing at a very respectable $2,570 NZ.

Series three of Downton Abbey began on Sunday on ITV1 and is coming soon to New Zealand’s Prime TV, which arranged the auction – the proceeds of which will go to children’s charity Starship.

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The winner will need to be available in Auckland on 26, 27 or 28 September and the hammer goes down this Thursday – so book your flight now…