Strictly stars shine brightly for St. Joseph’s Hospice

Eight supporters of St. Joseph’s Hospice in Thornton performed live at its Strictly St. Joseph’s event on Saturday night (25 September) which has raised over £11,000.

The event, which took place at the Titanic Hotel in Liverpool, was the hospice’s first mass participation event following the Covid pandemic which had a massive impact on its ability to raise money.

Strictly St. Joseph’s, based on the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing show, was supported by Marshside School of Dance in Southport which provided the professional dance partners and training sessions for all eight participants.

During the evening, Abby Ready (18) performed the Quickstep to Another Day of Sun from LaLa Land with her professional dancer partner, Megan Hosker. Amanda Fraser (44) danced the Jive with professional dancer and owner of Marshside School of Dance, Kaz Leach.

Cathy Cusack (57) performed the Salsa to Conga by Gloria Estefan and the Miami Sound Machine with her professional partner Carla Gwynne. Claire Grindley (45) danced the Waltz to Beauty and the Beast with professional partner, Leo Hollinworth.

Jason Maher (52) performed the Charleston with professional dancer Grace Jones to A Little Party Never Killed Nobody. John Cooney (70) and his professional partner Lucy Brennan danced the Tango to The Phantom of the Opera. However, there could only be two winners.

The Audience Award, chosen by the audience on the night, was presented to Liam Marshall (26) and his professional dance partner Eleanor Woods for their Rumba to Wicked Game.

Then, the title of Strictly St. Joseph’s Champions 2021 was awarded by the judges to Ellie Williams (24) and her professional partner Lauren Dean for their show dance to Fireball.

During the evening, guests enjoyed a four-course meal and entertainment from singer Scott Chapman on top of the Live Strictly dance show and a disco at the end of the night.

Four judges kindly gave up their time to support the hospice on the night, including professional dance teachers, David Beckham Doyle and Jane Barton along with former Everton FC players, Graham Stuart and Ian Snodin.

All eight contestant have raised thousands of pounds for the Thornton-based charity by raising their own sponsorship. Local business, Delivery Network Experts Ltd, generously sponsored singer Scott Chapman’s appearance and LeisureTechUK also supported the  event.

Maxine Armstrong, head of fundraising and lottery at St. Joseph’s Hospice, said: “Strictly St. Joseph’s 2021 was a fabulous success and we are so proud of all our dancers this year. They have worked incredibly hard and have put their heart and soul in to learning and practicing their routines as well as raising an incredible amount of money for the hospice.

“We’d also like to thank everyone who bought a ticket for the event for showing such generosity and support to the hospice on the evening. We raised lots of money from our auction and our raffle as well as from the audience voting on the night.

“A huge thank you to Marshside School of Dance for helping us to make this event such a great success as well as to our sponsors and judges for giving up their time to support the hospice.

“All the money we raised from Strictly St. Joseph’s will fund compassionate end of life hospice care for people from our communities across Merseyside and West Lancashire as well as support for their families during a very tough time.”

To see all the photos and videos from Strictly St. Joseph’s 2021, please visit our channels on Flickr and YouTube.