Strictly Dancing in aid of St Rocco’s Hospice in Warrington

The dancers (Front to back); Johanne Sutton and David Keane; Lisa Foden and Denis Stevenson; Emma

The dancers (Front to back); Johanne Sutton and David Keane; Lisa Foden and Denis Stevenson; Emma Hutchinson with Lewis Shand-Smith; Louise Taylor and Kevin Walker and Bethany Cammack with Ben Dunne - Credit: Archant

It’s only six months until ten novice dancers, including me, step onto the dance floor at The Mere and perform with a professional in front of an audience... just as well it’s all in a good cause

Bethany Cammack and Lisa Foden

Bethany Cammack and Lisa Foden - Credit: Archant

Oh my! What have we let ourselves in for? The chance to take part in a fabulous ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ style event was not one I could pass up.

Like the nine other amateur dancers involved (I use word ‘dancer’ cautiously) I’m a big fan of the BBC series which brings glitz, glamour and elegance to our screens every year. How could I say ‘no’ to the chance to train with a professional dancer throughout the autumn and then step onto the dancefloor, fake-tanned and dressed to the nines, at The Mere Golf Resort and Spa on Sunday December 14th. And it’s all in aid of a good cause - St Rocco’s Hospice in Warrington.

But as the day for our introductory training session at Cadman’s Dance Centre in Sale, loomed, I realised it isn’t just’s rather scary too.

Thankfully, I wasn’t alone with my fears. When I was introduced to my fellow Strictly amateurs we were immediately confessing our ‘two left feet’ style of movement to each other and wondering if we could possibly back out of this daunting challenge without causing the organisers, Claire and Lauren, too much of a headache.

But lovely Sharon Walker and Wayne Newhouse, who run Cadman’s, soon had us laughing and joking. As we plodded through warm-up routines Sharon offered words of encouragment and Wayne...well, tried his professional best not to laugh when two chaps trod on each others’ toes, one of them falling to the floor in the process.

What a bunch we must have looked. I could see one or two who’d clearly got rhythm but I didn’t look up too often to chart anyone’s progress...I was too busy watching my own feet.

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As I left the studio, with a flushed face and aching knees, I looked forward to the phone call from Sharon: she would be contacting each amateur to tell them what style of dance they would be doing. ‘If only I can get a dignified and stately dance’ I thought over the next few days ‘I could handle that’. Several days later, a text from Sharon: ‘Louise, your dance will be the Rumba, the dance of love, and your partner is Mark Anders.’ Gulp. Wish me luck...and Mark Anders!