A SALSA group is desperately searching the town for a new venue or else it will be forced to close permanently.
Salsanativa, run by Sally Marsden, has been running on a Wednesday night from the upstairs of Revolution, in the town centre, for several years.
However, this week Sally was told that the bar would no longer be opening on a Wednesday evening with immediate effect.
The 43-year-old is now making phone calls and inquiries in a bid to find a new and suitable venue for the three salsa classes she holds with dance partner Hender Corredor-Escalante every Wednesday.
She said: “I was really shocked when I found out, I frantically posted notices on our Facebook group, on our website and rang all our regulars to let them know.
“We’ve since had about 40 messages on our Facebook page saying how much people want the group to continue.
“Revolution was a perfect venue for us – we used to meet at the Moonrakers several years back, and then we moved to Revolution and it was just perfect.
“We need somewhere that is open and available on a Wednesday night until 11pm, has a wooden or tiled floor that is suitable for dancing and it needs to be big enough for about 10 to 15 couples to have enough space to be able to dance at the same time.”
Over the past four years, the group has brought many people together, with a total of five weddings and three babies, and has put in excess of 30 couples together through the class.
But numbers have been falling over the past few months, something Sally hopes will pick up once a new venue is found.
“Numbers have come down and I thought it was possibly because of the money – we used to charge £5 for a class and £7 for two classes, but in October we made it £5 to come for two or three classes which you can’t get anywhere else,” she said.
“I thought if we made it more affordable to spend the whole night with us it would attract more people, but our numbers didn’t increase.
“In January, people are often looking for exercise groups to help burn off the fat, and I don’t think they realise how much you can burn off with dancing, and it’s great fun, we are a really friendly group. About 95 per cent of the people that come are single and they find it is a much easier environment to talk to people compared to dating websites.
“It’s just getting people there – once they are there they will stay and they’ll enjoy it, they’ll make new friends and relationships.”
Sally is keen to hear from anybody who thinks they have a suitable venue, in the town centre or further afield, but has pointed out that the monthly party nights will continue to be held at Fusion, with the next one on January 25.
She said: “It is a worrying time. I know it is a worrying time for any business. You hear every day about job losses so I know it is tough for anybody, but when you’re a small business and trying to give benefits to people but you haven’t got that financial backing behind you to do a big marketing campaign, it is really difficult.”
Anyone who can help should call Sally on 07837 579015.