Twelve brave couples from North Somerset have helped raised more than £18,000 at Weston Hospicecare’s Strictly Fun Dancing.

The couples all danced either a salsa or a waltz on 23 March before five pairs went through to the final at the Winter Gardens.

Participants Angie Szabo and Stuart Milne took home the trophy after winning the judges’ vote for their dances.

BBC Radio Bristol’s Emma Britton, event sponsor Demetris Demetriou, dance teacher Chloe Helmore and last year’s winners Sarah Woolf and John Harvey judged the couples’ dances.

More than 340 people bought tickets for the occasion and packed out the Winter Gardens in Weston for another memorable night for all associated with Weston Hospicecare.

The night was compered by television presenter Martin Roberts, best known for Homes Under The Hammer, who gave his time for free. Dance teachers Ben Hazell and Ali Cooling, from Weston-based Burning Salsa, taught the couples their routines in the weeks leading up to the grand finale.

So far the fundraising total stands at £18,008 with additional funds set to take the total over £20,000.

Hospice events manager Kelsey Dehaney said: “I thought it was a fantastic event, we are so proud of how far everyone came along during the 10-weeks of training. They certainly put on a fantastic show.

“We are so grateful to everyone who helped us put the event together, including Martin Roberts, Burning Salsa, our brilliant judges and event sponsor Demetris Taverna.

“Thank you too to everyone who came along and gave so generously for Weston Hospicecare, your support is very much appreciated.”

Students from Weston College pampered the couples before they took centre stage.

Sandra Bull, the college’s lead for hair and beauty, said: “We were pleased to get involved with such a worthy charity. The event was a great opportunity for the Weston College hair and media makeup students to perfect their blow-drying and curling hair skills, and applying creative make up using colours to match the outfits.”

The hospice were helped by a whole range of volunteers on the night and without them wouldn’t be able to organise the event.

The charity must cover 80% of its running costs each year which means only 20% of the charities £4.2million running costs are covered by the NHS. This means sales from shops, donations and fundraising events like Strictly Fun Dancing are crucial.

To view the event photos and to watch the event video click here. Next up on the fundraising events calendar for Weston Hospicecare is the Mendip Challenge which will take place on Sunday 2 June. Those eager to take part can sign up today by visiting westonhospicecare.org.uk/mendip.

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