Apex jumping for joy

APEX Cheer & Dance is jumping for joy after classes resumed at its newly refurbished studio in Denton marking another huge milestone in its short history.

Andrew Gwynne, MP for Denton and Reddish, was on hand to cut the ribbon on Saturday, April 17 to officially welcome the troupe to its new home.

Originally based out of a small Scout hut in Reddish, Apex was formed in 2017 by head coach Hayley Ratcliffe as a junior pom dance team, with three dancers.

The doors open at Apex Cheer

Skip ahead nearly four years, and they are now home to more than 90 cheerleaders and dancers led by two head coaches and five assistant coaches who oversee a range of classes.

Hayley, 25, said: “When we first started Apex, I had no idea just how popular it would become, or how much demand there would be from parents wanting to enroll their kids.

“We grew so rapidly that within a couple of years we’d already moved studio twice to accommodate the growing numbers, but the enquiries just kept coming.

“We’d looked at the unit in Heaton Street Mills before, but just before the first lockdown we decided to go for it, and we’ve spent the last year doing renovations.

Andrew Gwynne MP cuts the ribbon

“It was such an exciting moment when we finally moved our stuff in. We officially opened on April 1 and it felt like we had hit the jackpot.”

Although staff managed to keep themselves busy throughout the pandemic converting the derelict shell into the dream factory it has become, times were still uncertain for the Apex crew.

Hayley continued: “We had to completely stop lessons. It was very scary because we had no idea if or when we would get any funding, so we had to rely on the kindness of parents.

“They continued to pay their fees to help us pay our rent. They were very supportive, and it was such a relief when the Government funding kicked in, but we still didn’t know when we could open again.

“We’re just so relieved to finally be getting back to normal. We’ve missed the kids so much and we would love to see many more young people getting involved,”

• To find out more about Apex Cheer and the classes they offer, call 07852 328305 or email
apexcheerteam.stockport@gmail.com

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