Starring role for Hartlepool’s Ruff Diamonds for Children in Need

Ruff Diamond pictured during their performance at the Hartlepool Mail Sports Awards.

Ruff Diamond pictured during their performance at the Hartlepool Mail Sports Awards.

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AWARD-WINNING dance crew Ruff Diamond have performed for the stars.

The massively popular Hartlepool crew were chosen to open the entertainment at a fundraising event for Children in Need.

The black-tie dinner was held last night at the Battersea Excel Arena, in London.

Mark Watson, who acts as a liaison between the Ruff Diamond crew and their manager, said: “It is a big thing for the boys. The BBC directly asked us to do it and they did an eight-minute routine.”

The crew then swapped into their suits and enjoyed the evening’s proceedings where Sir Terry Wogan was the presenter.

He was joined in the duties by former England cricketer Phil Tufnell.

Mark said the night involved sponsors paying for a table at the dinner, with a star sitting at each table.

The event, called An Evening With The Stars, is expected to raise many thousands of pounds for Children in Need.

But it is yet more proof of Ruff Diamond’s ever-increasing popularity. Mark added: “It was a full evening of entertainment and Ruff Diamond opened the show.”

He said their routine was specially put together from dances they have done.

In a year to remember, Ruff Diamond were runners-up in the Sky 1 competition Got To Dance.

Weeks later they picked up a special recognition honour at this year’s Pride of Hartlepool awards. Then they signed up with Beautiful Movements, the company led by former Pussycat Doll and Sky One’s Got to Dance judge Kimberly Wyatt.

Earlier this summer, the crew were crowned UK adult hip hop champions and followed that up by coming 16th in the World Hip Hop Championships in Las Vegas.

And earlier this month, they won the Inspire category at the Hartlepool Mail Sports Awards.

Crew choreographer Zac Healey has enjoyed success himself as well.

He recently launched a new branch of his Hartlepool-based hip hop academy at the Rainbow Leisure Centre, in Middlesbrough.

And he was also crowned as the winner of the choreographer’s category in the Carl Allan Awards which were held in Blackpool last weekend. Previous winners include Wayne Sleep and Arlene Phillips.