A glittering grand finale brought an end to St Luke’s Strictly Learn to Dance 2019 contest, raising more than £17,000 for the Hospice.

The coveted glitter ball trophy was awarded to sports therapist Fiona Notman from Northwich and her partner Callam Thomson who wowed the judges with their Quick Step.

A sell-out crowd at the Grange Theatre in Hartford enjoyed a brilliant evening of dance, courtesy of 12 complete novices and their professional partners who braved ten weeks of training and battled their nerves to raise money for St Luke’s Hospice.

The competition, which was sponsored by Northwich Glass, included a hairdresser performing the Tango, a welder executing the Foxtrot and an undertaker dancing the Cha Cha. All the dancers were trained by Callam Thomson of Sandbach based Precision Dance Academy.

The night however belonged to Fiona Notman who’s performance of the Quickstep to Nobody But Me by Michael Buble, received a perfect score of four ‘10s’ from the judging panel.

The busy mum-of-two works as a sports therapist at Crewe Alexander Football Club, a part-time teacher at South Cheshire College and also runs her own sports therapy and complementary therapy business in Northwich. She said: “For me, even before the day, I had already achieved what I wanted to achieve which was to become a better dancer. So to walk away with the trophy was just the icing on the cake.

“To have my children watch me perform was very special. For months I have been telling them how much I love it and what a difference it has made to my life, and they were just so proud of me on the night. Every little black cloud and all the stresses and strains of life just disappear when I dance, it’s total escapism. I can’t help smiling and laughing when I’m dancing. I have put it off for so many years, but now I’ve dipped my toe in the water I never want to stop.”

Fiona has so far raised just over £1,000 for St Luke’s, smashing her £500 target. She added: “I have been so amazed by the support I have received. Every single player at Crewe Alex sponsored me and the club was so supportive. My private clients made very generous donations too and they’re still coming in so hopefully I will have raised even more.”

Jane Thompson, Head of Events at St Luke’s Hospice, said: “What a fantastic night, bringing a wonderful conclusion to this year’s Strictly Learn to Dance competition. We have been so impressed by the commitment and dedication of the dancers and are so grateful to them for supporting St Luke’s.

“Congratulations of course go to our Strictly Learn to Dance 2019 winners Fiona and Callam. I would also like to thank Callam from Precision Dance Academy in Sandbach for training all the dancers and putting together such a spectacular show.

“The real winner of this competition though is the Hospice as more than £17,000 has been raised towards patient care, which is truly fab-u-lous!”