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Jive session will boost fund for D-Day veterans

Jivebunnies Nigel and Gill Oates are getting ready for the 1940's dance session at Blythburgh village hall.

Jivebunnies Nigel and Gill Oates are getting ready for the 1940's dance session at Blythburgh village hall.

Archant © 2012

THEY were the dances that helped people to - all too briefly - put aside the troubles of war.

But 1940s dancing will be making a comeback in Blythburgh this weekend – to help to send D-Day veterans to France to mark the 70th anniversary of the Normandy landings.

On Sunday, dancers will be swing jiving and doing the Lindy Hop and Balboa in Blythburgh village hall to raise funds for the D-Day Norfolk’s Last Battle appeal, and help send veterans of the invasion to France in 2014.

The event has been organised by Lowestoft couple Nigel and Gill Oates, who run the dance group Jivebunnies.com

After moving to the town four years ago, Mr and Mrs Oates started to organise 1930s, 1940s and 1950s dance classes with sessions at Blythburgh village hall and Lowestoft’s United Reformed Church.

The couple decided to support the D-Day appeal as this weekend’s tea dance – which is open to anyone – is on Remembrance Sunday and they thought it would be an appropriate cause to support.

Mrs Oates, 50, said: “We have themes for our tea dances and, as it is a Remembrance Day one, we thought we could do something to support veterans. When we heard about the appeal we thought it was a good idea.

“Our dances sessions are fun. People dress up in 1940s clothes and enjoy themselves. We have people aged from 25 to 75 taking part and everyone is welcome to come along on Sunday and join in.”

The Remembrance Day tea dance at Blythburgh village hall runs from 2pm to 5.30pm on Sunday.

Admission is £6, with all proceeds going to the appeal.

The D-Day Norfolk’s Last Battle appeal has been set up by The Journal’s sister paper the Eastern Daily Press and aims to help raise £20,000 to send veterans to Normandy in 2014. So far, more than £6,200 has been raised.

The appeal is being run to support the Norwich and District branch of the Normandy Veterans’ Association’s efforts to raise £20,000 to take veterans to France for one final emotional visit in two years’ time.

●To make a donation to the appeal, send a cheque made payable to Archant Community Media Limited to Sandra Mackay, PA to Nigel Pickover, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich, NR1 1RE.

●Jivebunnies.com has also started doing dance sessions at Margaret Mack Hall at Rockland St Mary, near Norwich. For information on the group’s dance sessions, visit wwww.jivebunnies.com

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