Age-friendly virtual dance classes on offer in Banbury

A National Lottery funded programme of virtual dance classes has started this month in Banbury for older people at risk of social isolation.

Banbury residents get dancing at home - Caroline Moss from Dance Creative
Banbury residents get dancing at home - Caroline Moss from Dance Creative

Sanctuary Housing distributed the funding to Age UK Oxfordshire through Sport England’s Tackling Inequalities Fund, which focuses on ensuring that everyone in the community can keep active during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Age UK Oxfordshire will run the six-week pilot programme of free gentle dance sessions for a small number of local residents who may be feeling lonely due to the current restrictions.

Each tutorial session will be facilitated by a specialist dance practitioner from Oxfordshire based dance company Dance Creative, and the sessions will be live streamed by The Mill Arts Centre.

Charlie Heritage, Sanctuary’s Neighbourhood Partnerships manager, said: “It’s great that older people in Oxfordshire will be able to enjoy dancing together from the safety of their own homes.

“We look forward to supporting some of our residents to take part, especially people who usually face barriers in attending classes in person because of transport or mobility challenges. It means they won’t be left behind.”

Helen Fountain, Age Friendly creative coordinator from Age UK Oxfordshire, said: “We are thrilled to secure the funding and look forward to working with our partners to bring a smile to people’s faces during these challenging times.

“Remaining active is so important for physical, mental and social wellbeing. It’s never too late to start exercising and it’s an effective way to maintain independence at home.”

If you are interested in signing up for the virtual dance classes, please email [email protected] or [email protected]