Labour MP meets with Sefton Theatre School to discuss finding th

Bill Esterson meets the staff and children from Sparkle and shine

A Sefton theatre school has drafted in Labour MP Bill Esterson for help in finding a permanent location for classes.


Sparkle and Shine Theatre School holds dance classes at the scout hut on Waddicar Lane and the Tithebarn in Melling. But with 90 children on their books, school organisers Catherine Parker and Wendy Searle are now looking for a permanent base.


They approached MP Bill Esterson, who himself is a former small businessman, for advice on how they can expand and develop the school.


Between them, Wendy and Catherine have more than 25 years theatre experience between them.


Wendy started dancing at the age of two and since then has gone on to work all over the world with famous names including Brian Blessed, Bernie Nolan, Lucy Benjamin, Basil Brush, Gerry and the Pacemakers and Antonio Fargos. She has managed and choreographed top name shows and is a fully qualified dance teacher.


Catherine started dancing at the age of three and has performed in music videos and big name productions, including on the BBC. She is also a fully qualified dance teacher and even teaches at degree level.


Wendy said: "Dance is a fantastic way for children to express themselves and become more self-confident whilst having lots of fun and keeping fit.


"We pride ourselves on our teaching and whilst at our school children are taught in a very caring, positive and enjoyable way, which in our opinion is the best way to nurture a child’s natural ability and talent.


"Since we've been running, we've had requests for our children to take part in shows and we want to give them lots of opportunities to develop and go on to take part in big shows.


"But what we need is a permanent base. We've been lucky enough to be able to use Melling's Scout Hut and the the Tithebarn, but we do need a full time location so that we can develop the school how we would like.


"So we are now looking for a new home where we can set up a more permanent base so that we fulfill our ambitions for the school so we can get the best for the young people who join us."


Bill Esterson, who met with Wendy to discuss the plans and meet some of the pupils, said he was very impressed with the school.


Bill said: "Catherine and Wendy have set up a fantastic business and it is clear to see that the children really love going to the school and they clearly get a lot out of it.


"They are both clearly very committed to getting the best for the children who attend the school and it was a pleasure for me to take the time to speak to them both and meet some of the children.


"As a former small business owner I know all too well the difficulties entrepreneurs can face, but I was more than happy to listen to Catherine and Wendy and try to help them out.


"It is good to see a local business of this kind thriving here in Sefton. It is in the interests of the borough and region for businesses like this to succeed.


"So if anyone out there can help Wendy and Catherine, please let us know."


If anyone has any suggestions for locations where Sparkle and Shine Theatre School could relocate, contact Bill Esterson's office on 0151 531 8433.

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