St Elizabeth Hospice’s Strictly Come Dancing competition kicks off with Tango and Cha Cha Cha

Hospice Does Strictly brings residents and staff together at St Elizabeth's Hospice Picture: GREGG B

Hospice Does Strictly brings residents and staff together at St Elizabeth's Hospice Picture: GREGG BROWN

Competitive couples at a Suffolk hospice have dusted off the glitter ball trophy and put on their dancing shoes for an annual Strictly-inspired contest.

Staff and volunteers are being put through their paces in St Elizabeth Hospice’s Strictly Come Dancing competition, which is running all week and culminating with Saturday’s grand final.

Four pairs are being taught different dances – including the Cha Cha Cha, Rock and Roll and the Salsa – each day before performing in front of hospice patients, who are the judges.

They are receiving expert tips from instructors at Suffolk dance schools throughout the week, with Bruce Lait from Lait Dance Club, Sarah Wagstaff-Till from Ipswich School of Dancing and Katie Cowling from Cowling Dance Academy giving up their time.

Day services sister Kate Barber said: “This is our second Hospice does Strictly, and it’s a really good way of bringing hospice staff and patients together, from across the whole hospice, as patients get to enjoy watching them rehearse and scoring their final performance.

Hospice Does Strictly brings residents and staff together at St Elizabeth's Hospice Picture: GREGG B

Hospice Does Strictly brings residents and staff together at St Elizabeth's Hospice Picture: GREGG BROWN


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“As well as providing entertainment for patients it’s a great way to bring the social side of music and dance into the hospice, as often our patients don’t get the opportunity to enjoy social time away from their home.

“Patients really enjoy the music and dancing, not only for the nostalgia, but also because Strictly is such a popular part of many people’s lives.”

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One couple per day make it through to the final on Saturday, also being hosted at the hospice from 3pm. Supporters are being invited to watch as the couples twirl, shimmy and two-step their way to the top.

Taking part in the Cha Cha Cha dance yesterday were fundraising team members Jess Prosser and Brian Taylor from the fundraising team and hospice chefs Roz Ramsey and Ricky Steward.

Hospice Does Strictly brings residents and staff together at St Elizabeth's Hospice Picture: GREGG B

Hospice Does Strictly brings residents and staff together at St Elizabeth's Hospice Picture: GREGG BROWN

Volunteer receptionist Paul Seymour also joined in with healthcare assistant Alison Myles, while Sophie Johnson from the marketing team paired up with Julie Kennedy from the hospice’s domestic team.

IPU coordinator Jackie Jones and her husband Ian were the winning couple.

All performances throughout the week are taking place at 2.45pm, with contestants being taught dances from 1.30pm.

See more videos of the couples taking to the dance floor – and footage of the grand final – by visiting our website over the next few days.

Hospice Does Strictly brings residents and staff together at St Elizabeth's Hospice Picture: GREGG B

Hospice Does Strictly brings residents and staff together at St Elizabeth's Hospice Picture: GREGG BROWN

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