CHILDREN have been putting on their dancing shoes to take part in an annual festival.

More than 1,250 young dancers from 31 different primary schools from across Durham and Chester-le-Street took part .

The three day School Dance Festival was held at the Gala Theatre in Durham last week.

It was organised by Durham and Chester-le-Street School Sport Partnership.

There were all kinds of different dance styles on stage as the schools created their own routines, from Bollywood, funky fitness, hip-hop, cheerleading and musical theatre.

The dance initiative is designed to encourage young people in County Durham to participate in physical activity and give confidence as they perform their rehearsed routines on stage.

Emma Nichol, partnership manager said: “Our annual Dance Festival is such a big favourite with our schools and it was brilliant to see over a thousand young people dance on the stage.

“The Dance Festival is now well-established, at the inspirational Gala, helping the children to perform brilliantly.

“The key objectives of this initiative are to encourage young people to lead active and healthy lives and develop confidence as they work together in teams. I think that this year’s morning and afternoon sessions have done a lot to achieve that and we are very grateful to all our schools and a host of great volunteers for their commitment and passion.”