Court School of Dancing

The Court School of Dancing was above the Broadway cinema in Eccles, now demolished and Morrisons car park!


Myself (Jim Costello), Keith Roberts and Brian Timms were instructors at the CSOD for a while along, with Bill and Chriss Shedwick.  Happy times.

Jim Costello

What wonderful times I had at The Court! I well remember two lovely ladies who I shared time with for a while - Christina H and Lynda S, both of whom I was greatly in love with. 'Course, I was silly and lost them both. Thanks to you both if you are reading this ladies - and Lynda, I still have Simon Teddy!

Bernard Morris

I used to go to the Court School of Dancing in Blackburn over Burtons Shop.  Happy memories of modern and latin american dancing as well as singles dances like the slobber, the slosh, alley cat, the stroll etc.
A good place to meet friends.

Sheila Clem

I used to be a dance teacher at the Court School of Dancing at Ardwick Green in Manchester M12 and although I never actually attended the Court School of Dancing in Eccles as a pupil member, I was booked to dance there on a couple of occasions to give a Latin American dem! (demonstration).

It came about with an idea I had, in early 1973, of a few of us on the teaching staff getting together and putting on a show for the pupil members. We called ourselves "THE COURTETTS" and set about rehearsing a number of routines. We initially cobbled together some of costumes (you won't believe the photographic evidence I have) but as we got more serious (and more bookings) we got one of the members to run up some proper cat suites for the lads and Latin dresses for the girls.  

As we secured more bookings our routine went from dancing the Rumba and jive in our first sfew hows, eventually to doing all five dances (Paso Doble, Samba, Cha Cha, Rumba and Jive, in later dems. Initially there were six of us coached by Pam Garrity, we were Tony, Dave, Andrew, Annette, Shirley and Phyllis. We were unfortunatelly reduced to four after one of our girls died tragically in a road accident.

Our (female) line-up changed over the years and it later dropped down to just two of us, myself and my final partner Jean. We ended up going to Roy and Brenda Twigg for our pro dem lessons until we too, split and went our own separate ways within the dance business.

I understand one or two photos were taken of us over the years and if any one has any copies they could show or send me; I would love to see them.

Us three lads (we are still in touch) all met and married our wives at the Court Schools of dancing and I remember on one of our "Staff Hikes" in the countryside, one of the husbands turned to me and said, "Courtney Castle (the founder) just doesn't know what he has started!!!"

Lots has happed to us all over the years and I could write a very thick book about it (which I might do one day) but my children dpresently don't believe a word of it when I tell them but in the meantime a couple of photos from any of you out there would not go amis!

Many thanks and best wishes,

Tony Zajac
Dance Teacher
(formerly at) The Court School of Dancing, Ardwick Green. 

I own the Court School of Dancing Eccles with my wife Barbara.  We have been at the Irlam Conservative Club for the past 20 years running as the - have a look at the website - it will be reverting back to after March 2013.

The Irlam Conservative Club is up for auction around the 11th March so we are relocating back to Eccles at the Masonic Hall on Thursday 14th March with a Country line dance class at 7.30pm followed by a new beginners class for ballroom at 9pm.

We are also at the Cadishead Conservative Club on Monday 11th March for linedancing at 8pm and also for Social dancing starting 8.45pm Sunday 17th March with a sequence dance instruction at 7.30pm .

We would love to see any of our old members at our new venues especially at Eccles at our new startup, I was trained by Barbara at Eccles & we were there from 1962 to 1993 when the premises was pulled down for the metro.

Thats when we went to Irlam and lost track of a lot of our friends who used to come from as far as even Blackpool. I took over management at the Court Blackburn and then transferred to the Court Wigan after training someone else to manage Blacburn.  After the Court at Wigan closed I returned to Eccles where Barbara & I got married & eventually bought the business off Mr Courteney Castles son who owned 32 schools around the country.

At one time we were the largest Dance School Organisation in Britain .We hope to hear from some of you soon.

Bill Benson

The Court School of Dancing no longer exsists as my Beautiful Wife BARBARA passed over to that Special place everyone knows as HEAVEN TO CONTINUE ON HER JOURNEY OF LIGHT on 23rd June 2013 As everyone who attended the school will know & understand BARBARA WAS THE COURT SCHOOL OF DANCING ECCLES so without BARBARA there can never be a COURT SCHOOL OF DANCING ECCLES therefore I have now closed the business & moved to Australia to live with my Brother GED & his wonderful partner KATHY and I take BARBARA with me in my heart everywhere I go. BARBARA WILL BE WITH ME FOR ALL ETERNITY I LOVE HER SO VERY MUCH & ALWAYS WILL .

Bill Benson

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Comments (8)

Topic: Court School of Dancing, Eccles
Kenneth Thornton says...
Hi Bill sorry to hear Barbara went to the place that we all go. I enjoyed the days at the Court in the 1960 with you Barbara, Sheila, Sam, and the rest of the gang. I have still kept up the dancing with some of the guys on Strictly Come Dancing in ... Read More
29th December 2014 8:08pm
Liam Walshe says...
I had 3 great years at The Court in Ardwick 1975-77 gaining gold medals In latin and ballroom aged 17. I remember Pam, Larry, Dave, Rosco, Tony and Bernie.  I am now 56 retired suffering with ms  - 2 sons 2 granddaughters.
9th January 2015 2:33am
Tony Zajac. Dance teacher says...
Hi Liam, It is always good to hear from former members (dancers) of The Court! Yes, we spent many fantastic years at The Court and now have a miriad of memories to go with it. I worked there, teaching and dancing with so many wonderful people. It ... Read More
10th June 2017 12:10pm
Stephen Tanner says...
Sheila and I had many happy times at Ardwick. She was a teacher and I a pupil although we did not meet there. Sheila's sisters Celia and Pat danced there with much more skill than myself. Marriage and children took us to Ramsbottom where ... Read More
18th June 2015 2:34am
Mark Finley says...
I remember going to the court school of dancing in the late seventies. seems such a long time ago now. I would go there on Saturday evenings and meet a young girl by the name of lynn tector. Wonder where she is now?
19th December 2015 2:58pm
Shirley Hoose says...
I went to the Court School of Dancing in Chatham Kent from 1968 - 1977 and enjoyed many great evenings there and met all my boyfriends there. It was over Burton's the Tailors and run by Derek White.
6th April 2016 5:38am
Ian Rowland says...
I attended Ardwick CSD over the Apollo in 1959...Happy memories and Happy Times...I still dance the quickstep and foxtrot just like I was taught.. They would advertise in the Manchester Evening News.Most of the teachers were from down South...I now ... Read More
15th December 2016 1:02am
Joseph manning says...
I attended Eccles court school of dancing in the early late 80s early 90s.. I'm looking to find my dance teacher Janice, I don't know her second name, ginger short hair and about 5t
24th February 2017 2:38pm

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