Dancers of all ages step out - it’s tapathon time

Janet Austin Tappers perform at annual tapathon, North Bridge Leisure Centre, Halifax.
Janet Austin Tappers perform at annual tapathon, North Bridge Leisure Centre, Halifax.

Dancers are preparing to take to the floor and raise funds for the fight against lung cancer in the 18th annual charity Tapathon.

Sixteen dance schools from Calderdale and Kirklees are taking part in the popular event at North Bridge Leisure Centre, Halifax, on Sunday, January 19 from 10.30am. Last year more than £11, 370 was raised for the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation.

The event was started in 1997 by Derek and Vera Hamer of Brighouse who were friends of the entertainer and musician Roy Castle. Brighouse dance teacher Janet Austin organised the event for the first time two years ago.

She said: “I still get very nervous waiting for the sponsorship money to come in so it was a huge relief when the total amount raised last year was up by £670 on 2012.

“It is good to know that dance schools are still happy to take part. Everyone who takes part feels this is a very worthy cause and comments on the feel-good factor of the day.”

Dance schools taking part included the Janet Austin Tappers of Brighouse and Huddersfield, the Strickland Cook Theatre School, the Dance Mill, Baby Ballet, Dance 4 All, Barbara Peters School, Whiteley’s Academy, Dance Arena Ballet and Stage School and North Bridge Tappers.

Taking part for the first time are Brighouse Central Tappers.

Janet said: “I am very grateful to my children and friends who give their support and help on the day - as well as all the wonderful dancers who perform to a huge array of music. I have received some sponsorship but would love it if more could help.”

The event will include a tombola stall, raffle and ‘guess the number of dancers’ competition.

Scholes-born Roy Castle - a dancer, musician and singer - died from lung cancer in 1994, despite being a non-smoker.

Any businesses who can help with sponsorship can email