POLE dancers twirled for 12 hours to raise thousands of pounds for an Oxford charity.
More than 30 dancers from across the county strutted their stuff at Baby Love bar in King Edward Street, Oxford, to net much-needed funds for Pathway Workshop.
The Blackbird Leys charity, which produces wooden outdoor furniture, gives training and employment to adults with physical and learning disabilities.
The event, which ran from 10am until 10pm, was the third annual pole-a-thon, and was organised by Kate Whitley, of Oxford-based Dance Inspires.
She said: “It was fantastic.
“We had 33 girls taking part and lots of people came in and put money in the bucket – or donated online.
“Baby Love was fantastic in letting us have the venue and donated a percentage of each drink.
“The girls performed in groups of five, and then we had four themed hours – with rock, burlesque, Abba and James Bond, in which with 15 people danced in costume.
“It was great fun and, with the dancers’ friends and families turning up, the place was packed.
“Some of the girls’ boyfriends did a com-edy routine. They weren’t very good pole dancers but they made everybody laugh.”
She added: “We’re aiming to raise £3,000, but there is still a lot of money coming in.”
She added: “We chose Pathway because we wanted to do something for a local charity. One of our students works with Pathway. Due to the recession everyone is struggling, and Pathway needs funds.”
Ms Whitley, whose company runs classes in Oxford, Witney, Didcot, Abingdon, Faringdon and Wantage, said Saturday’s event helped dispel some of the myths of poledancing.
She said: “It shows that pole dancing is a dancing and fitness form. It’s great fun and a great way to keep fit – there’s nothing sleazy about it.
“We’re opening people’s eyes to it and showing them that some of the moves are very similar to those performed by Olympian gymnasts because of the strength needed.”
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