Hannah Cockcroft: Golden girl Hannah is inspiration for Leeds dancers

Double Paralympic gold medallist, Hannah Cockroft, chats to Northern Ballet's artistic director David Nixon, OBE.
Double Paralympic gold medallist, Hannah Cockroft, chats to Northern Ballet's artistic director David Nixon, OBE.
Have your say

Inspirational Paralympian Hannah Cockroft showed a group of young dancers how to go for gold and accomplish their dreams during a visit to Leeds city centre.

The double Paralympic gold medallist visited Northern Ballet’s headquarters at Quarry Hill yesterday afternoon to inspire the dancers.

Northern Ballet’s artistic director David Nixon said: “Hannah is a phenomenal example of how sheer determination and commitment can achieve great things.

“We are incredibly proud she is from our home county.

“In this year of Olympic pride, Hannah’s accomplishments offer great inspiration to our young dancers.

“The passion and drive it takes to become a professional athlete draws parallels with those qualities needed to achieve a career as a professional dancer.”

He added: “Not only do we have young apprentices in our company, we have more than 450 students from across the region in our academy.”

Hannah, who suffers from cerebral palsy, is supporting the Leeds-based company by encouraging people to support the Big Give Christmas campaign from December 6 to December 8.

The Big Give will double donations made to the Sponsor a Dancer campaign, which was launched in 2011 in response to severe cuts in funding for the arts.

Northern Ballet set up the campaign to ensure it could retain a full company of 40 dancers and continue to create and perform its work during a tough economic climate.

In the first year of the campaign, around £100,000 was raised.

To support the cause, members of the public are being invited to visit Northern Ballet for a Coffee and Class event.

The fundraiser will be held at the site from 10am to noon on December 6, 7 and 8.

People will be able to watch dancers from the company take their daily ballet class.

They can then sign up to make an online donation, which will be doubled by The Big Give.

Any donations made to the campaign on December 6, 7 and 8 will be doubled by The Big Give at no additional cost.

To donate to the cause, visit the website at: http://new.thebiggive.org.uk.project/northernballet between 10am and noon on December 6, 7 and 8.

For more about the Big Give, visit: www.thebiggive.org.uk


Neil Hudson: Seriously strange Christmas presents