Twinkle-toed Sheffield dancers trip the light fantastic

Students from around the country at Hillsborough Leisure Centre for their ballroom dancing competition.
Students from around the country at Hillsborough Leisure Centre for their ballroom dancing competition.
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DANCE fever took over a Sheffield leisure centre which hosted a popular competition for hundreds of students.

Sequins, ball gowns and cummerbunds were the unusual sights at Hillsborough Leisure Centre.

Dozens of impeccably groomed dancers mixed with the normal queues of families and gym-goers.

Students from universities across the UK showed off their fancy footwork at the University of Sheffield Dancesport competition – one of the biggest events in the ballroom calendar.

Money raised during the day also boosted the St Luke’s Hospice in Whirlow.

Medical student Charlie Lowe, aged 22, captain of Sheffield University Dancesport Society, who lives in Crookes, said: “It does get very competitive and it’s been going really well.

“I have always wanted to do this but it can be hard to fit in with my studies.

“The Latin dancing later on really gets the crowd going.”

Students from as far afield as Cambridge and Oxford had set off in the early hours to make the contest.

They practised in the wings as couples performed for a panel of judges.

Crowds of spectators, some parents of dancers, others Strictly fans, watched from the side.

Jill Dodd, of Grenoside, who heard the music as she finished a fitness class and came to watch, said: “It’s great to see them all dressed up – it’s fabulous.”

Retired chemical engineer John Stennett, 62, of Bradway, part of a dancing group, said: “I think the dancing today is of a very good standard.

“I’m quite surprised that people who have only been doing it for such a short time have got to such a level.

“It’s a nice day out and this shows you how it should be done.”