TLC's NEW home of dance @ St. Barnabas Church Hall, Southampton

After 12 years at Archers, Tracie has finally found a wonderful new venue to be the home of TLC!
The refurb took 4 weeks and a total of 43 volunteers and a load more professional contractors. I would like to thank ALL of you who helped with the clearing, cleaning, scrubbing, sanding, painting, hoovering, painting, fixing, filling, curtain making, blackberry picking, tiling, interior designing, tea making, cake making, weeding, window cleaning, door fitting, mirror ball cleaning and generally helping every inch along the way!

The photos below show how hard everyone worked during the 4 manic weeks to ensure the place was ready for the opening on 9 September 2013 and how the place transformed from a neglected church hall to a wonderful dance venue in Southampton.

The full roll call of volunteers is:
Amy Large, Bahar & Melissia Chivers + Matt, Claire New, Dave Hoey, David Praine, Debbie Taylor, Dottie Woods, Ed Lacey, Elaine Cullen, Eric from Ballroom, Gareth Deats, Gordon Moore, Hannah Swanborough, Hatice, Jana Nicholson, Joe Chamberlain, John Chapman, John Hoy, Josephine Wakeling, Kathleen Askew, Kim Potter and baby Luke, Kimberley Chandler, Kizomba Steve, Lexi Stones, Martin Thom, Mel Dalley, Michelle Livermore, Nicky Harrison, Olga Taylor, Patsy McAllister & Alex, Paul Langford, Pete Green, Phil French, Richard Balmford, Sarah-Jane Leader, Simon Stevens, Steven Groves, Susannah Chandler & Daniel, Suzanne Overton, Tony Marsh, Father Barry and church wardens Richard and Dan

Thank you to so many friends, family and wonderful dancers who helped in every way, from the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU ALL!

Take a look :


Day one was Monday 12 August when Tracie received the telephone call that her proposal had been accepted !
The first 7 days were eaten up by planning, meetings, more planning, more meetings, decisions and then ....

Day One - clearing 50 years of stuff ... including this .. the fluffy puppet on a string - not Susannah!

Day Two - and Mrs Mop is in the house!

No comment here!

Ladies toilets - needed a good scrub!

Store room - loaded with 50 years of clutter, from the Mother's Union, Girl Guides to the Whist Drive cupboards, it took us 1 week to clear and clean each cupboard

Gareth the planner .... Now over working the hoover!!  "I think this is broken"!

Look how many T Pots we found?

Kimberley (Salsa) scrubbed the gents toilet - good job K!

That's Susannah on the kitchen table and me on the right .... yes I did do some work, and not just take photos!!!

While Gareth cleans the ladies toilet! In the parts we couldn't reach!

After all the fun, frolics and hard work - a much needed break! I should ask Costa to sponsor us!!!!

Day Three - more church clutter to sift through and shift

How many easles!?

We found this note on the back of a large piece of wood we were about the throw, then realised it perfectly fitted the back entrance over the stairs

Inside St Barnabas Church! & Gareth sneaks a tune on the baby Grande!!

More stuff - are you seeing a common factor here?!

Gareth on keyboards and Susannah on chairs!

Father Barry being 'encouraged' to clear stuff!

That was a good days work!

Gareth playing chop sticks on the Baby Grand in the Church ! Father Barry not impressed

Mrs Henry and a not so impressed Dan

Glam Debbie (Salsa) scrubbing up!

Day Four - Oooops Tracie makes a mess! Now you see it ......

Now you don't! (Thanks Gareth!)

A quick Tango on the stage after Tracie's Tango night - Tuesday 11.30pm - that's the beauty of having no neighbours & your own keys!!

Get back in that trap door, you naughty boy Pete (Tango teacher)!

The trap door is made safe - so we can't play Room 101!

Day Five - Kim (Salsa) arrives with baby Luke (hasn't started dancing ... yet!) and straight in the kitchen to make the team a cuppa tea

Lexi (Salsa) scrubs down the kitchen and finds a relic

Knock knock, who's for a cuppa cha?

Day Six - Ed (Salsa ) makes a lovely cuppa too!

Jana (Salsa) sporting her own pink gloves - now that's 'prepared'!

Hannah (Salsa teacher) on her hands and knees, scrubbing the skirting board all the way round - good girl!

Look who I found in the cupboard!

Day Seven - these hand painted back drops were left behind from a stage performance, in a bygone era!

Spot the real Sir Gareth! (my hero!)

Simon (Salsa) clearing cobwebs on the stage!

Kathleen (Tango) clearing the weeds in the car park & Phil (Tango) sanding down the front doors

All gone!

A well earned tea break for Kathleen, Lexi, Patsy, Alex & Phil ... but who can spot Gareth being naughty! :-)

Simon cleaning walls - pick a chair Simon!

Alex and tunes

Patsy (Tango & Salsa) banging in every nail on the stage so that we can sand it later

Day Eight - the difference between the old grubby skirting board and the newly scrubbed one! Thanks Alex, Lexi & Hannah

The Tower arrives - thanks Phil and Kathleen for providing and assembling!

Kathleen nimbly climbs the Tower

Gareth claims the frame as his new climbing frame (& you're not coming down until you've cleaned all the girders!) while Amy ready to catch him!

Michelle & Amy hard at work, unscrewing the old cloakroom hooks & then Michelle got bored & tried pole dancing!

Bank Holiday Monday end of work pizza for Amy, Michelle and Gareth

And then the frolics started! ..... This could be your lucky day!

Oh No it's not!!

Back hall open pipes on show, before John 1st boxed them in

Sanded doors - wow look at the difference!

The car park

Aw - My flowers from Phil and Kathleen ! Thanks guys!
And the amazing John (from Ballroom) fixed the 'Engaged/Vacant' sign on the ladies toilet doors which had not been working for 59 years!!!

Day Nine - John in the ladies toilet again!

Pete lends a hand a helps to clear out more stuff! & Acting like a heavy weight lifter!

Mabel - far right, teaches her first private lesson in the back hall, using the wooden boards ... for extra height??!!

The first colour on the walls!!! Mel and Kim Potter doing so well, until I caught them on camera wiping off a little mistake!

John measuring the painting line in the ladies toilet & Susannah and Bahar painting the ceiling in the back vestibule .. Cheeky !!

The girls and Pete messing around with white paint!

at full stretch Bahar and Mel masking the skirting boards

Nice pose Kim!

Day Ten
Tony puts all his trust in Debbie .... while Debbie chats to friends!
Then Debbie climbs the tower and we play with the voile curtains ..,. but our plan doesn't work!

Phil "Does that look straight to you Kathleen"?!

Ian the piano turner and Jeremy the electrician work wonders!

Tony works hard scrubbing the walls and John makes a wonderful vanity unit in the ladies toilet!

My friend David (ex Salsa in 1996-9) cuts the work top ready for the ladies vanity unit

Pete delivers a present for me and hangs it on the ladies wall! On the right the kitchen with 'THE' 2 old cookers

The disabled toilet to the left and gents toilet to the right

Gents toilet pre-TLC and the fire exit cleared of nettles by Susannah

Kathleen sanding the stage - wow what a difference

- & John has boxed in the ugly pipes in the back hall

John is still hard at work on the ladies vanity unit

As the electricians are working in the kitchen, Bahar waits for the kettle to boil in the main hall! And all because we love our tea!!
Meanwhile, Steven takes down all the coloured lighting and cabling from Archers

Plus the mirror ball at Archers ...

and he takes my instructions very seriously when I say 'take care with the ball ....' - so he wraps the seat belt around it!!!!! Ahhhhh!

So the mirror ball arrives safely ... phew

Day Twelve

Martin pops in on his birthday, plays a tune and I think Elaine is playing a duet

But caught 'yellow' handed ... not playing!

Eddie in the ladies, getting hooked up! Plus Bahar cleaning the gents ! Bazar!

Michelle polishing the mirror ball and giving it star treatment!  After all it was her generous gift at Tracie's first studio at Archers back in 2007!

Kimberley and Daniel scrubbing the radiators

Alex finds a new hiding place! 'We can seeeeee youoooo!'

Susannah cleaning the bell above the porch

Susannah taking the word 'Exit' a little too literally!!

Freshly picked scrumptious blackberries from the fire escape garden! And Bahar still cleaning toilets! She is aptly named the bleach girl

Guess who? and the porch celing before John's wonderful painting

Gareth Damp sealing the apex

Caught in the act - Kimberley scrumping and Susannah gardening!

Elaine laying down on the job of painting and Daniel hoovering (more than he does at home apparently!)

Richard painting the whole of the back wall of the stage and Suzanne on the ceiling of the back hall

Gareth and Richard acting out on stage .... but really opening up the newly acquired curtains .....

but the curtains were not red, as described, so they had to go back ..... shame!

Another night shift and another pizza - we liked the name of the chicken!!! It was so good, Kimberley had to have another!

Steady as you go Gareth - he's my hero!

Yes that's me on fluffy feather dusting duties! Styled a la Ginger Rogers!

Michelle works her wonders to make the mirror ball gleam after all the years of dust at Archers
Meanwhile Susannah is on a mission .....

She wanted to clean the bell and then found the gutters were full too!

This was our workshop at 1pm and by 1am it was all packed away ready for the Church coffee morning after service - as per every Sun!

John with blackberries picked from the back of the Church (ssshhhh!) and Susannah & Dave are up to no good!

Day Thirteen - Camouflage .... Father Barry wears the same colour shirt (and socks) as the ladies toilet feature wall!

Good line Michelle (and nice styling too!)

Nicky glossing the skirting and Hatice makes cakes for us all

Gents toilet looking better and the fire escape too - thanks to John and Susannah respectively

1am on Saturday cleaning up - good girl Kimberley

Oops the hoover can't take anymore! Broken!

Day Fourteen - Steven puts up the LED coloured lighting while Steve paints his Kizomba room!

John the 1st glosses the porch while John the 2nd packs up his tools and leaves for his holiday (after days of working with us)!

Phil gives his shoes a shoe shine after sanding the stage!

Day Fifteen - the fairy lights arrive .... masterminded by Debbie and ably helped by John and Melissia

a well earned lunch break for Debbie, Melissia, Matt, Bahar, Gordon, John & Dottie

The electricians Jeremy and Chris hard at work - little troopers!

Nice pose Matt

The rebel Bahar states her preference!

Guess who? ...... Oh it's Dottie

Guess Who ..... oh it's Bahar taking down the cross!

Day Sixteen - even the church warden Richard helps to sweep

John is still glossing the porch!

Richard and Gareth finally moving the third piano out of the back hall

Hello, hello, is anyone in there!? Talk to me!

Action man Joe lifts the cross into it's new elevated position!

Race yer!

Simon eating cake while painting ... now that's dedication when you don't want to stop for cake!

I spy with my little eye, someone beginning with J ..... Joe .... hiding behind all my gear at Archers! It took 2 loades but everything arrived safely

Day Seventeen - The floor is finished and Maria the beautiful Belly Dancer takes her first class on the new floor!

Then Gareth and I have to have the first dance on the fantastic new floor!

My wonderful new dance floor!

My fab new floor .... again!!

Gareth making me a DJ booth

The second FAB new floor in the back hall

Day Eighteen and Gareth's birthday!

The kitchen - where I baked his cake ..... not!!! But showing my new fridge instead of 2 old cookers

Looking good!

Bahar SJ and Gareth all working hard on the back studio

John the first taking a well earned break

Somebody took my camera!!

Joe making holes!

Wow Joe .... now that's a tool for the job .... after drilling a hole through the stage wall and mounting the speaker on his newly made brackets!

John the first is still in the ladies toilet making the new door fit into a skewed frame! While SJ & Gareth paint the stage walls

Debbie is on the final fairy light curtain and gets both the electricians working on the case!

And she's done it - wonderful job Debbie! Fairy lights by day .....

Joe does a fantastic job attaching each string of fairy lights to the girders, going up and down the tower for hours!!

Fairy light curtain tie back hooks - I like Joe's wayof drilling with SJ hoovering up the mess immediately ! Genius!

And the fairy lights by night! Beautiful

Gareth's finished for the day ! After working nearly 12 hours on his birthday, he deserves a rest!

Day Nineteen
Gareth hard at work again and making my DJ console

Now Debbie makes the table cloths

Michelle on pipes!

I love this picture to the right .... Simon (I think) leaves a note for the next person to let them know where he has finished!!

Josephine and Bahar working well

A table for 2!

Day Twenty
Eddie on cleaning duty and SJ behind bars

Susannah hangs the newly-made ladies vanity unit curtain - perfect

The stage floor is sanded - Father looks on as son does the work!

Susannah: "Do you know 'It's on my foot' "
Eddie: "No, but if you hum it I'll play it"!!!!!

Eye eye! We can see straight through!

Monday 9 September 2013 - Day 28 - Final Day & all hands on deck to clean up and get it ready for the opening at 7pm! OMG the pressure!

Beautiful nets - thanks to Susannah for making and Debbie & John the first (below) for hanging them

Then the finishing touches!

and finally at 6pm on Monday 9 September 2013, we are ready .... well to go home shower, change eat and return for the opening of Ballroom at 7.30pm!! But we made it!

Thank you for taking the time to see the transformation and I'm so looking forward to seeing you at the NEW TLC venue soon!

After the opening this was the first performance on the stage by Phil and Kathleen at our Tuesday Tango club, who compiled this song dedicated to Tracie and the move to the new home.

(1) Tracie has moved to St. Barnabas Hall.
We wish her all the best.
She's worked so hard to help us in Tango
and to guide us in our quest.
(chor) Learning side steps, forward ochocs, back steps harder
and also heros
So much harder than I thought it would be.
Gonna have to work on this more.

(2) The floor's been layed and the décor is bright,
the light's aren't in our eyes.
It's a very large hall with parking nearby
It's sure to please your eyes.
(chor) Her friends have halped to wash and paint,
doing all major repairs.
The deadline's tight, her head's been buzzing,
I'm sure she's been pulling her hair.

(3) But now we're here work is complete,
The dance crew are back in flow.
I'm sure she has plans for all types of dance
and never-ending shows.
(chor) Learning side steps, forward ochocs, back steps
harder and also giros.
So much harder than I thought it would be.
Gonna have to work on this more.

(4) We thank you Tracie for being our teacher,
Also Jill and Pete
It's time to dance and enjoy the evening, let's dance
ourselves off our feet.
(chor) Learning side steps, forward ochocs, back steps harder
and also heros
So much harder than I thought it would be.
Gonna have to work on this more.

21st December 2013 - More work to install the industrial extraction unit - thanks Steven & Gary