Bristol’s own Strictly stars

March 26 2015

REDLAND residents Charley Thomas and Emily Holloway really know how to strut their stuff.

REDLAND residents Charley Thomas and Emily Holloway really know how to strut their stuff.

So much so that the pair were crowned winners of Bristol's very own Strictly Come Dancing contest.

Charley and Emily impressed judges and a packed-out audience at a glitzy grand finale – after only eight weeks of professional dance training.

The competition, which saw 11 couples signing up to the dance-off, raised £20,000 for Bristol’s only adult hospice St Peter.

Money raised will will go towards caring for people with life-limiting illnesses.

Emily, 29, said: "We are so pleased to have won Bristol Strictly Come Dancing 2015 - it has been an amazing experience right from the start and we have met some amazing people along the way.

“It's been such a fantastic opportunity to dance alongside such talented people, and to support St Peter's Hospice in the brilliant work they do.

“The training has been so much fun. It's been a very emotional time and all the contestants are already planning our next fundraising event for the charity."

Emily has also raised £700 for the charity by organising a sponsored 'Zumba-thon'.

St Peter’s Hospice event fundraiser Louisa James said: “Huge congratulations to Charley and Emily who have worked so hard during dance training to be able to perform at the finale in front of all of their friends and family.

“The event has been a huge success for the hospice; it’s the second time we’ve held the competition and to raise such a brilliant amount is very rewarding, we hope to hold the third annual competition next year.”

The couples were trained by professional dance teachers Andrew and Sue from Burroughs Dance Centre, who taught the hopefuls different styles of dancing including the American Smooth and the Samba.

The finale took place at the Ansom Rooms in Clifton where audience members voted for their favourite couple.

The event was presented by Bristol’s very own Tess and Brucie – Alice Crocker and Ian Downs from Jack FM – and judges included Alex Lovell from BBC Points West and Ian Axton from ITV West Country.

St Peter’s Hospice cares for more than 2,670 patients each year as well as supporting family members.

All services are provided free of charge but this care costs around £18,000 a day. For around £13,000 of that, the hospice relies on gifts in wills, kind donations and funds generated by the hospice shops.

For more information about St Peter’s Hospice fundraising events, visit: www.stpetershospice.org

Strictly Come Dancing