Across the Causeway area after World War Two, local dance halls and, at times, transformed community halls and other public buildings were at the heart of social life in our communities. For many it was where they, their parents and/or grandparents met. They held tea dances which provided opportunities to come together, socialise, stay active and healthy and in some cases raise funds for causes and charities. One of these important dance venues was Ballymoney Town Hall, which now houses Ballymoney Museum.
As many of the previous dance halls have disappeared it was this link to our building’s past and it’s collection of tea dance posters, invitations and cards that inspired us to relive the tea dance days for our local community.
And so, it was decided that for our Sporting Heritage Day event we would hold an afternoon Tea Dance on 3rd October 2023 at Ballymoney Town Hall. Open to everyone, we were delighted to be fully booked and to be joined by residents from local care homes.
The dances were enjoyed by all abilities and provided the opportunity for everyone to get involved whatever their fitness level. Those who attended were treated to music from the wonderful Francis Faulkner as well as refreshments and a display of objects, photographs and panels showcasing dances that have taken place in the area.
It was a joy to see everyone come together, enjoy the music and to hear how the dance had brought friends together after years apart. We will certainly be planning another!