The frocks and fake tan were out in full force at the Strictly Learn to Dance Grand Finale which took place at the Crewe Lyceum on Saturday 21st November.

Based on BBC One’s primetime show Strictly Come Dancing, eleven couples put their eight weeks of dance training into practice at the Grand Finale. Former Latin and Ballroom dance champion, Antonio Franchitti, mentored and trained the group, teaching the Waltz, Rumba, Tango and Jive.

Friends Lorraine Murphy from Winsford and Martyn Rigby from Davenham were announced as champions after dancing the Rumba in front of 230 audience members. Sharon Burrows and Paul Boniface from Red Shift Radio presented the show and awarded the winners with the converted Strictly Learn to Dance glitter ball trophy.

Winner Martyn said, “We thoroughly enjoyed taking part, Lorraine and I have made some great friends and memories, it was a lot of hard work but completely worth it!”

Lorraine said, “I’ve never been a natural performer, however the training from Antonio and the support I had from Martyn was fantastic. Dancing in front of an audience was an amazing experience I’ll never forget and I’d recommend it to anyone thinking about taking part next year. Winning Strictly was a fantastic achievement, made even more special knowing I’d raised money for my local Hospice.”

Couple Jill and Michael Horner won best strictly journey, Aimie Worsnop and her partner Simon Hunter won the audience vote.

The judging panel consisted of Antonio Franchitti, Rachel Rimmer Senior Lecture in Contemporary Dance at MMU, Andrea Fragata-Ladeira Chief Operating Officer at St Luke’s Hospice and Rachel Kibblewhite, winner of Strictly Learn to Dance 2013.

Catherine Moore, Senior Events Fundraiser said, “The standard of dancing this year was incredibly high and I was blown away by the calibre. I was amazed to think our wonderful couples have only been dancing for eight weeks prior to the competition. On behalf of St Luke’s I’d like to say thank you to everyone who took part. HeelHeadOver Productions have kindly put together a DVD of the Strictly Learn to Dance Grand Finale which is now on sale from the Hospice.”

St Luke’s needs to raise £8,600 a day and the money raised from Strictly Learn to Dance will help fund vital services at the Hospice.

For more information about St Luke’s events or about taking part in next year’s Strictly Learn to Dance please contact Catherine Moore on 01606 555826 or email catherine_moore@stlukes-hospice.co.uk