The Para Dance UK National Dance Sport Championship took place over this weekend in Harrow. The Championship was opened by Para Dance UK Patron Trishna Bharadia and Bush and Company CEO Helen Jackson followed by a Latin performance from Team GB Athletes Paula Moulton and Gary Lyness.
Following the opening ceremony the Conventional Part of the Championship covering Ballroom and Latin followed by the Freestyle competition in the afternoon. During the day we had 51 athletes, some competing for the first time as well as regular competitors taking part. We had some amazing athletes who entered the Championships with a mixture of the community from 15 to 98 years of age working hard, and showing Everyone Can Dance!
Billy Oddy, the father of one of the athletes Tweeted “I’ve never seen my son play football, train for a swimming gala or wear out a pair of shoes but his achievements have made me so proud.”
Athlete Rebecca Fowler said “My first time competing at the UK National Championships. It was a very well organised event, it was wonderful to meet all the other groups, watch all the other incredible dancers and show the UK that #everyonecandance ”
Over the day 110 people attended the event with 8 Groups from across the UK competing for Gold, Silver and Bronze position. In total 97 medals were given out across the Categories of Conventional (Ballroom and Latin) Single Men and Ladies, Duo (Two wheelchair users dancing together) Class 1 and 2, Combi (wheelchair user and standing partner) Class 1 and 2. Freestyle (which is any dance genre including Ballet, Street, Contemporary, Theatre) in Single men and ladies, Duo, Combi, as well as a Groups Freestyle category of Small, Medium and Large.
Patrick McGeough, Para Dance UK CEO says “I am extremely proud of the Para Dance UK team for running a successful National Championship this year! I look forward to seeing those athletes who have won medals to inspire others to get involved and join either one of our local groups around the UK or will join us at the next Championship in 2019 or will become an Instructor and start a group up for their community. I look forward to continuing the Para Dance UK ethos with all our Instructors, Athletes, members, partners and Sponsors old and new in continuing to break down barriers in the Dance Community and showing the Everyone Can Dance no matter what their age or ability and that they can chose to dance for Fun, Creatively or Competitively we look forward to opening more opportunities for the disability community in the future.”
Para Dance UK would like to thank Bush and Company, our main event sponsor and Capezio London for their support around the Athlete Goody Bags.
We would also like to thank all those who volunteered, staff and everyone involved in making the Championship a success. We congratulate all those that won medals and we look forward to those who did not, challenging the winners next year! Finally we would like to congratulate Lisa Welsh for winning the Stephen Boyne Award as voted by the Para Dance UK Adjudicators, Classifiers and Para Dance UK team,
We hope to see you all next year in June 2019 for our next National Championship. This will be held in Bristol on the 22nd June 2019.
More photos and video on the Championship can be seen on social media- Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and we will be releasing more shortly. If you would like to be a sponsor for our 2019 Championship please get in contact by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Note to editors:
Para Dance UK is the National Governing Body for para dance sport and para dancing within the UK, for those who would otherwise be excluded from dancing. The aim of Para Dance UK is to promote and develop para dancing as a sport and leisure activity across the country and to raise the standard of coaching and competition in the UK and internationally at all levels. Para Dance Sport is accessible to anyone with no boundaries in terms of age limit or level of ability. “Everyone can dance” is the Para Dance UK motto.