CHA cha cha and quickstep lovers took over the Nova Hreod Academy on Sunday for a ballroom challenge with a difference.

No fewer than 80 Strictly Come Dancing fans came together for a 60-minute FitSteps class, a dance fitness programme developed by the BBC show’s stars Natalie Lowe and Ian Waite, alongside world champion swimmer Mark Foster, all in aid of a good cause.

The event was in support of the Prospect Hospice.

In just an hour the 74 women and six brave male participants succeeded in raising £724, and funds are continuing to pour in for Swindon’s only hospice.

The event was the brainchild of fitness instructor Karen Hyde, of Greenmeadow.

“It was fantastic,” said the 42-year-old. “People paid £5 for the class and we sold cakes as well. People also did the ice-bucket challenge beforehand and donated to the hospice. There is still money coming in and I think we will be way over £800. For an hour of people’s time it’s fantastic.

“We had six men and it was hilarious but they did it.”

FitSteps combines the best known and most popular Latin and ballroom dances with fitness techniques.

Karen is a longstanding supporter of the Wroughton hospice, having led the warm up for the charity’s annual Starlight Walk for many years.

“It’s a charity close to my heart,” she added. “I know a few people who have been in the Prospect. Unfortunately cancer seems to be affecting people a lot younger nowadays. It’s too sad.

“The hospice relies on donations and it is my chosen charity.”