DIDDI dancers strutted their stuff as they took part in a new activity session.

Diddi dance is aimed at youngsters from 18 months to four and half-years-old.

Charlotte Foxley, who owns the franchise for the classes in Colchester, Maldon, Halstead and the west Tendring area, got involved after looking for clubs for her three-year-old son Freddie.

Charlotte, who lives in Layer Breton, said the classes, which can also be enjoyed by younger children, are energy-packed and help to improve youngsters' co-ordination and rhythm.

Charlotte said: "We are here to nurture their natural love of movement in a structured yet relaxed class.



"We use ribbons and hoops to help them get the most from each funky track as well as other fun props which change with different dance themes such as salsa and disco.

"They also learn about music and dance styles as well as having tons of fun.

"I strongly believe toddlers need to get active and socialise and our classes are a great way for them to meet other children and join in with as much as they want to and in time they will become confident and learn what is going to happen next.

Charlotte is also hoping youngsters with learning disabilities will go along and she is trying to set up special after school sessions.

Charlotte's eldest son, Charlie, who is now eight, has special needs and is a pupil at Lexden Springs School in Colchester.

She said: " When Charlie was three, I took him to a class and it was awful.

"He wasn’t walking and there was no understanding so I left. I wouldn’t want another mum to feel like that.

"I am passionate about setting up a Diddi Dance class for special needs children of school age as an after school activity in Colchester.

"This is in the early stages of planning and I am currently looking at venues and talking to other mums to see how we could get this to work.

"I understand how difficult it is to join clubs and activities in the community and how often we cannot, as their needs are such it is hard to participate.

"But I would really encourage any parents and carers who have a child under five with special needs to come along to one of the classes during the day.

"I understand what it’s like so hopefully they will feel able to come along."

Classes are held every Monday from 10am at Jungle Adventure on the Peartree Retail Park, Moss Road, Stanway, and every Thursday at Old Heath Community Centre in D’Arcy Road, Old Heath, Colchester, starting at at 9.45am.

Sessions are also being staged on Wednesdays at the MICA centre in West Mersea High Street starting at 9.45am and on Fridays starting at 10am at St George’s Church Community Room in Basin Road, Heybridge Basin.

Classes are bookable by the half term but youngsters can join at any time.

A free trial class is offered to each youngster to see if they enjoy them.

For more information and for prices, go to www.diddidance.com or www.facebook.com/diddicolchester.