Home   Deal   News   Article

Footsteps leave mark as dancing duo celebrate 25 years

Looking back over 25 years of teaching dance in Deal, Chris and Jean Balfour of Footsteps Dance School remember West End-worthy shows, tidy footwork and meeting thousands of youngsters as highlights.

The school, which is still going strong, was established at St George’s Hall in November 1988 and has seen the couple teach a catalogue of styles ranging from ballroom, ballet and tap to street dance and salsa.

Chris, who grew up in St Richard’s Road, Deal, has been linked with the premises since he was a boy.

“My parents took me there when I was six,” said Chris. “They had lessons there and taking me was cheaper than paying a babysitter.”

As he grew, his love of dancing flourished, powered by his competitive drive at contests.

He even gained the approval of Strictly Come Dancing judge Len Goodman.

Dancing was his calling and Chris left Deal to train at the Gillon Stage School in Croydon, and then to Dance Club International in Kensington.

The duo have different dance histories before creating their partnership. Jean was a Tiller Girl and together they taught and performed in America before setting up their own dance studio in Buckinghamshire and then Deal.

They invested heavily into the Footsteps, and the result has been a huge success story for Deal.

“Other than Deal Dance Centre, we are the longest running dance school in Deal.

“We taught many of the girls who have started up their own schools and some have gone on to great things.

“Now we are getting mothers, who used to come here, coming back with their little girls.

“And at the moment the Strictly Come Dancing classes are bringing in a whole new bunch of people too.”.

For the full story and pictures, see this week's Mercury, out now.

Close This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Learn More