Boys follow in fighting footsteps of men

Chorley and District Boys Dance group
Chorley and District Boys Dance group
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Frog and Bucket

Preston Guild Hall

Lancashire’s Ludus Dance company is working with 20 members of Chorley and District Boys Dance group on a one-year project in commemoration of the First World War.

The group was awarded £34,100 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for the project.

The Journey of a Lancashire Soldier is wrapped around three men who lived, fought and died and will culminate in live performances, a short film and an exhibition at the Museum of Lancashire in Preston.

Based on ideas they developed themselves, 20 young people from the Chorley and District Boys Dance Company will explore how it felt to be a young soldier risking their life on the front line and experience the harsh realities of fighting for your country both now and through history.

The project will see them work with David Brookhouse and staff from Lancashire Infantry Museum and Museum of Lancashire, as well as a professional Ludus Dance choreographer and a filmmaker.

They will create a themed performance piece along with a documentary and educational resource pack that will go out to schools and libraries across the county.

By following in the footsteps of Ernest Collins, Stanley Bewsher and William Ratcliffe VC, the Chorley Boys will be helping to preserve the soldiers’ stories and memories for future generations.

Ludus artistic producer Anthony Briggs said: “We are thrilled to have received the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund for this innovative and original project.

“We are confident that the Chorley Boys’ work will enable many more children and young people to connect with this important aspect of our social history.”

The Chorley company enables boys who achieve excellent grades in GCSE Dance to continue contemporary dance training.

The company has seen dancers accepted at prestigious establishments such as Rambert, Northern School of Contemporary Dance and London Contemporary Dance School.

The group is based at St Michael’s CE High School in Chorley and is always on the lookout for new members.

David Upton