A DANCING duo who entertained the public with their retro routines in Town Gardens during lockdown are staging a vintage picnic to thank those who supported them

Helen Mansell and Gavin Taulbut regularly delight passers by with their dancing on the bandstand, performing jives, Lindy Hops and rock and roll numbers.

They became a social media hit after spectators starting posting videos of their routines and now people often lookout for them, hoping to catch a glimpse of them dancing.

Helen said: “We’re having a vintage picnic with live bands and Swingout Swindon and Just Jive dance groups will be there to teach people how to dance. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have anyone to dance with because we do lots of strolling and out of hold routines.”

“All this started because of us dancing in the bandstand and all the support we got from that. We want to say thank you to everyone who has been there for us and do something, not for profit or charity - just to cheer people up. Especially as this started in lockdown and now we’re out of it, it will be great to do something with everyone.”

South Swindon Parish Council is supporting the event on June 27. It will be a jam-packed day with entertainment from The Vipers, Haney’s Big House and Jon Clare – The Piano Man.

Gavin said: “This came about from us doing the dancing and lots of the lovely feedback we received. So we wanted to celebrate that and put on an event so people can listen to our style and take part in the dancing.”

“The bands we’ve got are really great and we know through our dancing. We’re encouraging people to dress in 1940s and 50’s style if they want to but we want people to be comfortable.”

“This opens it up more as people have been watching us as they walk through and enjoy the music so hopefully this will get people dancing too. Fingers crossed for good weather but it will go ahead anyway.”

The event runs from 10 am until 7.30 pm and is free with support from sponsors including Charles Harding Estate Agents, Duncan Self-Drive and Gastech.

A friend is putting together a dancefloor with John Holmes Music Centre operating the sound and DJ Jason’s Dukebox providing music.

Helen added: “This event wouldn’t have been possible without these people giving their time to freely help us make this possible. It’s not an easy thing to do to pull it all off and we’ve only just got the go-ahead so it’s full steam ahead.”

“We just want people to have fun because if you’re smiling then it makes everyone else smile too.”

There will be a donation bucket to help cover expenses of people involved and people are asked to respect Covid social distancing guidelines on the day.