Dancers will be turning out in force

Members of DanceInnovate who will be taking part in the Armed Forces Day celebrations in Sunderland on 25th June.
Members of DanceInnovate who will be taking part in the Armed Forces Day celebrations in Sunderland on 25th June.
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TALENTED youngsters are preparing to put on a show to salute the bravery of our armed forces.

Sunderland-based performance school Danceinnovate will feature at the Armed Forces Day celebration on Wearside.

Wearsiders will come together on Saturday, June 25 in appreciation of the work and sacrifice of Britain’s Army, Navy and Air Force.

The event, which aims to be the biggest of its kind in England, will take place at Seaburn Recreation Park.

It will coincide with others across the country, but organisers aim to make Armed Forces Day in Sunderland second only in size to the national event being held in Edinburgh.

Shelley Baxter, manager of Danceinnovate, said: “We can’t show enough respect and gratitude for our Armed Forces. We are really proud to perform at such an important event.”

The youngsters, aged from four to 16, are currently rehearsing their routine, which includes dancing to songs from the First World War to present day, at Cityspace, in Sunderland.

Ms Baxter, who is also a drama teacher at Southmoor School, said: “The performance school has appeared at many North East venues in the past year, such as the Stadium of Light with African Diski Dancers and the kite festival, in Washington, but this performance is special to many members, having family or friends in the Armed Forces.”

Vocal coach Kayleigh Lindstedt added: “The children really appreciate this opportunity and understand the meaning of the songs they are performing at this special event.”

The Ministry of Defence has donated a grant to help get the event off the ground.

However, the organisers still require donations.

Cheques or postal orders, made out to Forces Day Sunderland, can be sent to Janice Murray, 3 Erin Square, Sunderland, SR5 2QA. Please enclose a SAE for receipt.

Armed Forces Day is an opportunity for the public to say “thank you” and recognise the outstanding contribution the military makes to the country.

Those celebrated include current serving troops, service families, veterans and cadets.

Community groups, schools, businesses, local authorities and veterans’ associations are being encouraged to organise special events and show their support for the men and women of the services.

This year the national event will be held in Edinburgh on June 25, although Sunderland’s celebration is aiming to be the biggest in England.

For more information, visit www.armedforcesday.org.uk