Fun and fashion in memory of Jack

LET'S DANCE ... girls turn on the style.
LET'S DANCE ... girls turn on the style.

AN explosive night of fashion, dance and song has helped to boost the funds of three good causes in memory of a South Tyneside schoolboy.

Models of all ages took to the catwalk of the Hedworth Hall in Dean Road, South Shields, last month to showcase Asda’s latest summer collection at George.

They were joined on the night by dancers from J ‘n’ K dance school and Fusion Danceworks who wowed the crowds with their energetic routines.

Singers Ellie Stephenson and James Bassett also took to the mic, while the Mayor of South Tyneside, Coun Ernest Gibson, himself also belted out an exclusive performance of his new single – The Mayor’s Song.

The two-night show followed on from a football tournament held in April organised by CE Sports, based at Chuter Ede Community Centre, in memory of schoolboy Jack Leggett.

The nine-year-old died, last December, two months after being diagnosed with a brain tumour. In his honour, his mam Susan Clarkson, his brothers James and Thomas Leggett as well as his aunt Deborah Williamson took to the catwalk in a range of George outfits.

The night also saw the Mayor and Mayoress Patricia Ridley strutt their stuff on stage to the delight of the youngsters.

Both the fashion show and the fundraising football tournament were aimed at boosting the funds for CLIC Sargent children’s cancer charity as well as the The Mayor’s Charity and helping terminally-ill teenager Ewan Barry who suffers from Friedreich’s ataxia, which causes progressive damage to the nervous system.

Coun Gibson said: “The fashion show was an absolutely fantastic experience for both myself and Patricia to be involved in.

“Everyone was so full of enthusiasm. It was also great to see the wide range of ages of people on stage at the end from the little ones at just four years old to the older, more mature, models.

“And it was raising money for some really good causes.

“I’d like to thank everyone involved in the fashion show and the football tournament for taking the time out to put on what were fantastic events.”

Cash from both events was split between the three causes, with each receiving £585 each.

Ewan’s mam Lisa Cowley said: “I just want to say a huge ‘thank you ‘to everyone – it really is much appreciated.

“Ewan is not feeling too good at the moment, so everything helps us to try and make life more comfortable for him while we can.”

Jack’s mam Ms Clarkson said: “The fashion show was so much fun and the boys really enjoyed it. We have made some really good friends, we all can’t wait to get involved in the next one.

“It was also nice for us to be able to give something back to CLIC Sargent for all the help and support they gave us throughout Jack’s illness and beyond.”

The events were supported by Asda Boldon and Asda South Shields, with community life champions Tracey Tough and Mavis Maughan on hand to help out backstage along with Joyce Auty, the Hedworth Hall, Chuter Ede Community Centre, Otto restaurant, and Simonside Centre for Positive Youth Activities, who loaned the surfboards for the show, Iain Brown photography and Mak Walters.

Twitter: @shieldsgazlisa