Dancing Queens: Teenagers nominated for top youth award after inspiring Fenland performers

TWO teenagers have been nominated for a top youth award after inspiring hundreds of youngsters across Fenland to take up dance.

Courtney Few, 15, and Chloe Hebden, 19, will bid for glory in the ROI Cambridgeshire Young People of the Year (YOPEY) awards, which carries a top prize of �800 from a pot of �2,000 put up by sponsors including Fenland firms ROI and Hutchinsons.

Courtney, from March, began performing with Dance Mania aged four. Now, she runs classes for juniors, helps with administration and has even started a popular academy tuck shop.

Lisa Dickinson, founder of the March-based dance troupe, said: “Courtney has inspired other young people at the academy and offered different forms of help. The kids look up to her and respect her. She helps me a lot which makes my life easier.”

Teenage talent Chloe earned her nomination by launching her own dance classes in Whittlesey after her dreams of attending a top dance school fell apart due to the cost.

The former Peterborough Regional College student started dancing at five and now passes her skills on to youngsters across Fenland.

Fellow college graduate Josh Batsford, who nominated her, said: “Chloe is as dedicated to dance as Beckham is to football.”

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In May, Chloe opened The Hebden School of Dancing at the Manor Leisure Centre in Station Road, Whittlesey. She runs classes for 45 boys and girls aged 2-13 on Fridays and Saturdays and hopes to start classes for adults.

She said: “I have always been keen on teaching and I wanted to have my own dance school since the age of nine. I love being able to give dance skills to the children and see how much they enjoy it.”

• The YOPEY awards are open free to the public and are being held at Peterborough Cathedral on September 13.

The deadline to nominate inspirational young people for the Cambs YOPEY has been extended to August 13. To enter young people aged 10-25, who should live, work or study in Cambridgeshire, visit: www.yopey.org

To book free places at this year�s YOPEYs email invites@youngpeopleoftheyear.org or call in at the Visitor Destination Centre, 45 Bridge Street, Peterborough.

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