Tag Archives: ballet classes in Menston

Exciting news from Menston – the blog, food and ballet

Menston mum Becky Bond, blogger extraordinary, BBC Radio Leeds producer, columnist and occasional feature writer for the Yorkshire Post, and a valued member of Menston-based writers’ club Writing on the Wharfe, is joining the editorial team of this site/blog. Followers of Becky’s own blog will know she has a unique writing talent, witty and often hilarious, described by the founder of this site – a former journalist – as “one of the three best writers I have ever worked with”.

Regular posting on this blog was interrupted some time ago by health problems and suspended altogether early this year other than occasional posts about “major events”. It was intended to keep the events and other listings up to date but these suffered too. This will now be remedied as far as possible though it does depend on people emailing details of their events or new/changed businesses to menston.village.wharfedale@gmail.com. If you sent something for the listings earlier than, say, beginning of April and it hasn’t yet appeared please resend.

So, beginning very soon, posts written by Becky will appear about once a month and she will be introducing herself briefly within her first post. Becky will be completely free to choose her own subjects and how she treats them. The best way not to miss her posts is to ‘follow’ this site; WordPress users will know how, others just click the button at top right and enter their email address (which will not be public nor disclosed).

Occasional posts by the original author of this site will continue (as ‘webmaster’ he’ll continue to be responsible for the ‘mechanics’, listings, etc); posts will continue to be strictly about Menston (as defined in ‘About’) its people and organisations or matters affecting them. Businesses and organisations will only be listed if based in Menston and posts about them will only appear if there is genuine ‘news’ about them – ie no surreptitious advertising. Although comments will continue to be uncensored any attempt to use them for commercial advertising, as often the case on the village Facebook group, will not appear.

Solo delicatessen

Menston delicatessen Solo, Main Street

No longer solo but will continue to be ‘très bon’ for sure

After 13 years serving the village in the Solo delicatessen and coffee shop, Gareth and Audra Andrews are handing over the business to Kirsty Richardson, who as ‘Très Bon Raymond – Kirsty is Cooking‘ is already well known to many villagers. The ‘grand opening’ is on 11 July but more about this in a future post. One of the changes will be a new manager, Jilly Geering; a sad loss for the Menstone which she has turned into a real, much appreciated, ‘community facility’ but hopefully this will continue.

Much more about this, Kirsty and her plans in a future post very soon.

After 21 years Menston’s ballet/dance school moves from Kirklands to the Parish Room

Miss Stephanie as she is fondly known to current and former students, who teaches ballet/dance in Menston, has turned out many top, award-winning dancers in the 21 years she has been serving our village and (some for even longer) other localities in West Yorkshire with her unique, very professional tuition. She has also given her young dancers unique opportunities, like dancing before a capacity crowd in Wembley Stadium and, coming in July this year, at the British Formula 1 Grand Prix at Silverstone and of course participation in some wonderful annual shows.

Bradford Council, with their usual unappreciative arrogance, recently ‘moved’ the ballet classes from the main hall at Kirklands to a totally unsuitable upstairs room in the old building. Fortunately a new very suitable location was found in the Parish Room at St John’s Parish Church so Menston’s ballet/dance classes will continue on Tuesdays – late afternoon/early evening except in school holidays. This may turn out to be no bad thing as many villagers are against taking over Kirklands from Bradford Council – the financial burden would be enormous – so it may cease to function at all as a community centre.

Latest accomplishment by one of Stephanie’s students is the award of a scholarship by the British Ballet Organisation (now known as bbodance – one of the leading dance examination boards in the United Kingdom which provides an examination syllabus in classical ballet, tap, jazz and modern dance) to 12 year old Jenny Horsfall. Having seen her dance for the first time in the class at the Parish Room, the author of this blog, a follower and fan of ballet since well before the years of Fonteyn and Nureyev, predicted great things for her. So much joy and beautiful movement in her dancing with the unique, knowledgeable encouragement from ‘Miss Stephanie’.

Another success story is 18 year old Nic Cain who has been followed on this blog for about four years, though ‘Miss Stephanie’ has been teaching him for 14.  Another Menston student we predicted would achieve great things having seen him dance frequently in class and in the annual shows, Nic has just been funded to attend Laine Theatre Arts in Epsom from September.


Business Association meeting postponed; still time for Menston pantomime; WW1 battlefields tour

The meeting of the Menston Business Association, scheduled for 26 February, has been postponed – new date to be confirmed – until Chair Christine North has recovered sufficiently from recent surgery.

We all wish Christine a rapid recovery.

Troupe of dancers from Menston ballet/dancing classes at Kirklands. Details of classes under 'Events'

Troupe of dancers from the regular Menston ballet/dancing classes at Kirklands, performing for the first time in the Menston pantomime. Details of classes under ‘Events’

Still time to see the panto

Opening night for this year’s panto was last night – Thursday – but there are still three opportunities to take in this Menston tradition. Staged by Menston Thespians, there are performances at 7.15pm on Friday and Saturday and a 2.00pm matinee on Saturday.

It’s at the Kirklands Community Centre. Tickets are £8, children £6, available by phoning 01943 872016 or 01943874855

Poppy picture with annotation 'Lest we forget'WW1 battlefields tour

There are still a few places left on the Menston tour of the WW1 battlefields in September. For six days from 13 to 18 September, there will be specialist guides and participants will be staying at the Novotel Ypres, a few minutes walk from the Menin Gate. The cost of the tour is £499, a £50 deposit being required at booking. To book or for more information contact either Judith Knaggs (david@timewarpband.co.uk) or Dale Smith (dale.smith@bradford.gov.uk).

Christmas events in Menston; Menston youngsters on stage

Lots of events in Menston in the run-up to Christmas, at the Primary School, at the two village churches including, of course, Christmas carol services and a Christingle Service, the chance to donate some toys for the children at Meadowlea, Menston’s childrens’ home, and Santa will be at the Menstone Club. There are several Christmas Fairs, including the one at Menston Primary School on St Nicholas’s Day. The next five events will appear in sequence in the ‘Imminent events’ calendar in the right column but for more details, contacts, etc, go to the Events menu heading.

Menston classes in Kirklands turn out award winning dancers

Scholarship winning Menston schoolboy Nic Cain, practising with Molly Foster from East Morton during Menston dance classes at the Kirklands Community Centre

Scholarship winning Menston schoolboy Nic Cain, practising with Molly Foster from East Morton during Menston dance classes at the Kirklands Community Centre

Not in Menston, but with Menston youngsters attending dance classes in Menston taking part, is a performance of ‘A Christmas Carol’ staged by Bradford Theatre Arts (BTA) on 18, 19 and 20 December. The venue is the New Bradford Playhouse in Little Germany in the city. BTA’s 2013 Christmas production has been nominated for three Theatre Awards and students and teachers will be attending a champagne reception and Awards Ceremony at the Playhouse on Friday (5 Dec).

Tickets for this year’s performance later in December are available from the Playhouse booking office or go to http://www.bradfordplayhouse.org.uk.

The youngsters are from the Menston dance classes held in the Kirklands Community Centre every Tuesday afternoon and evening and Saturday mornings. These classes have been going for 20 years, are turning out award winning dancers and Menston youngsters are winning scholarships with the British Ballet Organisation (BBO), getting extra lessons with top professional ballet dancers. Nic Cain is the latest Menston youngster to get a BBO scholarship.

Stephanie Clements, who teaches the Menston classes, is founder and principal of Bradford Theatre Arts which also has classes in Bradford city and Eldwick in the Bradford area.

BTA Menston dance class students with teacher in the Kirklands Community Centre. L to r: Nic Cain (Menston, April Lever ( Leeds), Izzy Eades-Jones (Bradford), Maria Sage (Menston), Stephanie Clements (BTA Principal and teacher), Molly Foster (East Morton), Josephine Gibbs (Menston), Aimee Turnbull (Burley in Wharfedale)

BTA Menston dance class students with teacher in the Kirklands Community Centre. L to r: Nic Cain (Menston), April Lever ( Leeds), Izzy Eades-Jones (Bradford), Stephanie Clements (BTA Principal and teacher), Molly Foster (East Morton), Maria Sage (Menston), Josephine Gibbs (Menston), Aimee Turnbull (Burley in Wharfedale)

However, it is not only ballet which is taught, but modern dance and tap dancing too. To enrol in classes contact Stephanie by email, omatiggerific@gmail.com, telephone her on 0798 671 3203, or email BTA at bradfordtheatrearts@talktalk.com.