Strictly Banbury 2018

I’ve been saying over the last year or so that I really want to go back to dancing and make time for this in my life as it’s something I love and miss doing. In true Jess style, rather than just signing up to join a dance class in the local area, I set myself a challenge. Queue Strictly.

I have volunteered to take part in this year’s Strictly Banbury 2018 dance competition, run by Step by Step Dance School, which is all about raising money for charity, spreading the joy of dancing and having fun! This is the 9th year that Strictly Banbury has been running and this year we are supporting the ‘999’ services benevolent funds. We will also be raising a small amount for AGE UK. The competition sees 20 brave local heroes partnered with dancers to learn latin and ballroom dancing for the first time. With just 9 weeks to practice and perfect technique the competition is on!

I actually joined Step by Step at the age of 12 when it’s founder, Andrzej Mialkwoski, set up latin and ballroom dance lessons for children in Brackley. 12 years on and the school has rapidly expanded with studios in Oxford and Northampton and local classes in the Northamptonshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire areas. Unfortunately I had to leave the dance school when I went off to university but continued competing in the uni circuit. Not having danced since, I am trying to get back up to speed with moves and technique so that I can help my partner as much as possible (I’m sure it’ll work out)!  I remember the very first dance that Andrzej taught us. It was a disco dance that we eventually used as a warm up in every lesson. It made me chuckle to see that they are still using the very same routine as a warm up today, but it made me feel at home!

We’re now 3 weeks into training and have mastered the choreography for our two dances – The Samba and Foxtrot. We will start work on our group dance in the coming weeks and then its all about polishing for the final performance in April. I’m really excited that I got involved and am looking forward to show week that is sure to be filled with glitter, tan and sparkly outfits!


I have set up a Virgin Money Giving page to collect donations for the ‘999’ services benevolent funds. This is a really important cause and any donations will be a massive help to them. If you would like to donate, please click this link that will take you to my page and follow the instructions.

Buy tickets for the show

If you are interested in supporting the dancers and local heroes with a night of glitz and glamour in the ballroom then tickets are still available. You can book via The Mill Theatre, Banbury at the box office or online via the link below.

Thank you for your support and I look forward to seeing you on the dance floor!

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