Hartlepool’s junior jivers take to the dancefloor for charity event

All the youngsters have great fun on the stage
All the youngsters have great fun on the stage

They strutted their stuff on the dance floor – and Hartlepool’s junior jivers will get a chance to do it every year.

The first ever Strikly Salsa Kids event was held in town with seven primary schools across town taking part.

Each school put forward a selection of their own children for a charity ballroom dance contest and amazed organisers said the standard was extremely high.

Dozens of pupils did the cha cha, pasodoble, rumba and jive in front of an audience of hundreds of people at the Borough Hall and it all helped raise money for Hartlepool & District Hospice.

The dance extravaganza went so well, it will now become an annual attraction, said the organiser Carol Hammond.

She added: “It was an absolutely fantastic night. The atmosphere was electric.

“Every school was cheering on their couple as they danced their waltz, tango, cha cha.

“And when they started their salsa, wow, the cheers raised the roof. I have never seen shimmies like it, especially the boys. The louder the cheers the stronger the shimmies!”

Carol hailed the standard of dancing on show as “very impressive. They all danced amazingly.”

The overall winners were Sacred Heart Primary with Hart Primary School in second place and St. Peter’s Elwick School in third spot.

But there was praise too for the other teams from Lynnfield, Throston, Jesmond Gardens and Barnard Grove.

As well as the competition, said Carol, students from Springwell School gave a “fabulous demonstration of foxtrot, tango and samba as well as their freestyle disco routine to lots of cheers of encouragement.”

Other highlights included international dancers Adele Jang Don and her South Korean husband, Jang SeHyoung Don giving a demonstration.

Carol added: “I would like to thank my helper in all this training, Amy Grylls. She has done a marvellous job in assisting me.

“This first of the new annual Strikly Salsa Kids Interschool Competition was a night that these children will remember for the rest of their lives.”

Organisers are still working out the total raised for Hartlepool & District Hospice.