Oh baby! It’s a family thing

Left to right, expectant mothers Steph Godfrey, Jane Eyre, Leanne Cotson, Helen Cullen and Joanne Hunter pictured with children (left to right) Charlotte Godfrey, Holly Hughes, Lilly Hughes, Emily Hughes, Alyssia Cotson, Scarlet Weegram, Scarlet Hunter, Sophie Chapman and Masie Hunter

Left to right, expectant mothers Steph Godfrey, Jane Eyre, Leanne Cotson, Helen Cullen and Joanne Hunter pictured with children (left to right) Charlotte Godfrey, Holly Hughes, Lilly Hughes, Emily Hughes, Alyssia Cotson, Scarlet Weegram, Scarlet Hunter, Sophie Chapman and Masie Hunter

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IT is one big happy family at a Hartlepool dance school.

And the good news is – the family is growing all the time at the Jill Cooper Academy of Dance where a baby boom is in full swing.

An astonishing 10 of the parents have had children in recent months or have bouncing babies on the way.

And as one of them told the Hartlepool Mail: “There must be something in the Hartlepool water.”

Steph Godfrey, 31, is one of the marvellous mums brigade and told us: “We just keep adding on. Every time we come in, we find out that someone else is pregnant”.

Helen Cullen, 28, is expecting a child in July and said: “It is mad isn’t it that so many of us are having children?”

The dance school in York Road, Hartlepool, has 70 students, and has been running for more than two years.

It takes students from the age of 17 months upwards and owner Jill Cooper said of the baby boom: “Well at least we know we’ll have another generation of championship dancers!”

The full line-up of proud parents – and mums-to-be – is:

• Robyn Gelson whose baby is due any day;

• Amanda Lake who is eight months pregnant;

• Five-month pregnant Helen Cullen who is due to become a mum on July 17;

• Joanne Hunter who is also due to give birth in July, a day before Helen;

• Leanne Cotson who is four months pregnant;

• l Kirsty Rowbotham who is four months pregnant;

• Lisa Lithgo whose daughter Lexi Lithgo was born 16 days ago;

• Rebecca Holdforth whose son Harvey Dowson is 13 weeks;

• Steph Godfrey whose baby Grace Godfrey is nine months;

• Jane Eyre whose baby Lily Hughes is 10 months.

Many of them also have older children already attending the close-knit dance school.

Jane, 34, admitted: “It is unusual to have so many new mums at the same time.”

And Leanne, 26, suggested: “There must be something in the Hartlepool water.”

Steph added: “I think it is down to the fact that it is the age group where a lot of the parents are people in their 20s and 30s.”