Having a ball: 'Golden era' of dancing makes comeback at Radcliffe Civic Suite

Bury Times: RENAISSANCE: Susan Bohm and brother David Baldwin RENAISSANCE: Susan Bohm and brother David Baldwin

A GOLDEN era for dancing was resurrected when Radcliffe Civic Suite was beseiged with ballroom fanatics once more.

Last Friday, the Radcliffe Renaissance Ball was staged to kick off a regular series of events in the town.

Organised by David Baldwin and his sister Susan Bohm, the free dance saw around 150 people enjoying the venue’s spacious dance floor.

David, from Great Harwood, said: “It was a fantastic night with a fabulous turn-out and we are delighted.

“Lots of people came from the wider area to attend but, there was also a great deal of local support.

“It was incredible to see the venue being used as a ballroom once again and people attending told us they had an excellent time and would like to come again.

“Everything has been really positive, so hopefully we can get the night buzzing on a regular basis and receive continued support in future.”

David and Susan played dance music together in local clubs as 16-year-olds and recently formed new venture North West Dance Events after years of working as musicians.

The siblings became interested in hosting an event at the 220-capacity civic suite after previously putting on tea dances at the Longfield Suite in Prestwich.

While chatting to some of the older dancers, Susan was told about the ‘good old days’ when the Radcliffe ballroom hosted regular dances attended by several hundred people.

David said future balls will feature a blend of popular sequence dancing, ballroom and Latin with short inclusive sessions from local dance groups and live music.

He added: “The renaissance balls will promote ballroom dancing in general and support the Radcliffe Civic Suite so it’s a win-win situation.

“There are no age restrictions and we are eager to attract dancers young and old.

“There are wide-ranging benefits to dancing — it is healthy exercise, socially interactive and when you dance you feel good.”

A second ball is planned for February 20 which is set to be followed by weekly Thursday night sessions in March, April and May.

Doors are at 7pm and dancing begins at 7.30pm – with the ball open to individuals or people attending with a partner.

Christine O’Neill, assistant manager at the civic suite, said staff at centre is always open to new ideas and suggestions for ways to use the facility.

“We always want to make use of the venue as it has a fantastic spacious dance floor and many years ago there were dances here on a regular basis.

“It was a fantastic event — people thoroughly enjoyed themselves and the dancefloor was heaving.”

Tickets are priced at £5 and can be purchased from Radcliffe Civic Suite on 0161 253 7812 or from Dance Events North West on 07842 792439.

There are also a limited number of advance £1 off vouchers available.

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