Save Chapel Street Community Space Campaign

by Danzaction; Friends of The Big Dance Company in Penzance, Cornwall, United Kingdom

Total raised £11,511

raised so far

+ est. £2345.50 Gift Aid



Saving our community space to continue & develop delivery of inclusive activities within (but not limited to) the arts, dance and wellbeing

by Danzaction; Friends of The Big Dance Company in Penzance, Cornwall, United Kingdom

We're still collecting donations

On the 31st January 2022 we'd raised £10,876 with 108 supporters in 108 days. But as every pound matters, we're continuing to collect donations from supporters.


We have days to raise the final balance to secure match funding from the council and save Chapel Street Centenary hall from developers.

After a huge campaign during lockdown 2021 and with the enormous support from the community, the council and our friends and family, we were so gratified to have raised sufficient funds to support the purchase of the Church Hall in Chapel Street, already home to many community activity providers and save it from development. 

Sadly we lost the bidding battle to a higher bidder who planned to use the incredible building as a residence. Things were looking very bleak, however, a few months passed and thanks to the community asset protection applied just in time by the council the buyer pulled out from the sale. 

The building was put back on the market with the addition of community asset value in place, allowing priority offers to be made by deserving community groups, so naturally and with urgency our charity organisation re-applied with a revised offer and with overwhelming support from the council and Chapel Street Methodist Church, led by the new and supportive Reverend Ralph Ward we have been confirmed the successful buyer.

Our newly structured CIO charity Chapel Street Creative will be purchasing this incredible heritage building not only to continue providing studios for the inclusive dance & arts community who have been long term tenants here in Chapel Street, (some for several decades) but to open the doors to an abundance of community based activity providers and projects in need of an accessible and centrally located space. There really is nothing like this in Penzance!

...a couple of links to just some of the important groups who can be found at the hall: help us video 

Thanks to our wonderful supporters we have so far raised a staggering £63,000, however with the inevitable market value rising as well as works needed carrying out on the building to provide accessible facilities, our charity is short of £60,000 of making this dream a reality. 

We need to secure these premises to provide a safe haven, not just for the young people of The Big Dance Company, Shallal and Ignite you but for many other inclusive creatives and community based groups to thrive. We will provide a much needed creative space in Cornwall to develop the arts that are under constant threat in the current climate. 

Please pledge today every pound donated by you the council will match fund 2 pounds. 

How can you help?

The power of mouth - Please talk to people you know that you think would care about this project.

The power of social media - Please share our video and tag people you think would care about this project, telling them why it means alot to you. 


B/ For those that don't know our story please read below to find out why we are so passionate about our community.

My name is Fiona Richardson and I am the Artistic Director of what is proudly known worldwide as ‘The Big Dance Company’. I started this journey in Goldsithney, a small village on the outskirts of Penzance, Cornwall over twenty years ago as a new beginning for me and my son after escaping a life of domestic abuse. Surviving a traumatic life experience at such a young age has left me with a grateful and empathetic heart, a strong will to help young people reach their full potential. I strive to mentor them with core values, life skills, self-belief, personal development and the ability to see the beauty in themselves and in others.

1603560973_1482e5f3-5ce6-4c5f-97e3-144fdad4d642.jpg It was after making the live semi-finals of Britain’s Got Talent in 2008 with my group ‘Flava’ that the studio spiralled into a full time mission. Led by my own son Kyle Richardson, it gave us a platform to do the work that we are most passionate about. Using our gift of dance to transform lives, make a difference in the community and embark on educational international outreach projects and performances. 1603293219_fiona_south_africa.jpg

The Big Dance Company, a family run local business forged by myself, husband Ben and son Kyle, strives to offer BIG Dreams and BIG opportunities to people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds. Our studio has performed in twelve different countries and holds titles for Cornwall in National, European and World Championships. 

We have been awarded with Dance School Of The Year 2020 & nominated 2021, Pride Of Penwith, Teacher Of The Year Penwith, Unlocking Human Potential and the Honorary Philip Lawrence Award presented to us by Sir Trevor McDonald for our anti-bullying initiative. We have been invited to an intimate lunch with HM Queen Elizabeth II amongst many other incredible recognitions and world class awards, helping put Cornwall on the map for international arts and culture.

There is so much more to celebrate! I wish I had more room to share with you our journey so far, which has been fulfilling, exciting and so emotionally rewarding for all who have taken this ride alongside us. The incredible life changing success stories of our students continue to make us proud and are the catalyst for our perseverance through the many challenges we have faced together. 


This catalyst is only getting stronger with our unique, recently launched ambassador projects where our incredible young people, through interactive performing arts and dance will tackle important issues such as climate change, equality and diversity, domestic abuse and mental health in young people. Through this initiative, we hope to rebuild our community morale and begin to heal the psychological damage caused in the wake of COVID-19. 

Established for twenty years, with the support of our incredibly strong and loyal dance community, our studios are sustainable and will continue to flourish, providing we have a secure and permanent roof over our heads and the heads of many other community groups .


We are running a worldwide campaign to ask if you might team together with us and help save this building.


Despite our own challenges, for twenty years The Big Dance Company has been leading projects to help our local community and worldwide communities including: 



  • Domestic violence awareness with Devon and Cornwall Police 
  • Hate crime awareness with Devon and Cornwall Police 
  • Anti-Bullying campaigns, nationally funded by the Home Office 
  • Anti-Knife crime campaigns, nationally 
  • ASB national workshops
  • Local scholarships for underprivileged children 
  • Mental Health awareness in association with UDOIT foundation
  • International outreach in South Africa 
  • International outreach in the inhabited landfill sites of Asia
  • Local Action For Children 
  • Bereaved families support
  • Chelsea children's hospital visits and performances





We survived the initial National lockdown period by immediately delivering our full and extensive timetable online to our students at home. For many this was a lifeline of structure and normality in such an uncertain world.

Gratefully, back in our premises and beginning to get back on track again, we now face the uncertainty of whether our organisation will be able to continue without its current space and location

The building in Chapel Street, Penzance has been our resident dance space for 18 years and will imminently be going up for sale. Our licence comes to an end soon and if we do not act fast, we are likely to lose our studios and be forced to relocate out of the heart of our community where our work is needed most of all.

During this pandemic, our young people and their families could really do without further disruption and uncertainty in their lives. For many, dance and their progressing education within the arts, is one of the only positive influences, keeping them moving forward with purpose and fulfilment.

We are running a worldwide campaign to ask if you might team together with us and help save the home of this very special dance family. If we can find a solution to secure this premises, we will be able to provide a safe haven, not just for our young people, but for many other inclusive creatives and community based groups to thrive including Shallal Dance Company, Ignite you, and Barbara Salter's Exercise group for adults. We would like to provide a much needed creative space in Cornwall to develop the arts that are under constant threat in the current climate. 


We understand that in the current climate not everyone can donate financially, but by sharing this and raising awareness for our cause is just as valuable to us. Please reach out to as many friends, family and business colleague's with this page and you never know there maybe someone that can help us. 

Thank you so much for reading and caring about the future of our studio and its beautiful people inside it.


Thank you from the bottom of our hearts 

Fiona and Ben and the Danzaction team.

You can watch our post lockdown social distance dance show we managed to put together for Penzance ~Mazey day 



This project offered rewards

£7 or more

BDC Family Christmas Party Fundraiser

Party the night away Friday 17th 6:30-10pmDecember at Rumours Nightclub and celebrate the amazing year we have had and all of our achievements - Dress to express DJ Singer Lip Synch Battle Buffet Dancing

£30 or more

£20 Reward

we will be creating a heroes wall at the studio to thank you for supporting us , your name will be on the wall for everyone to remember and be grateful to.

£500 or more

£500 reward

VIP Show Tickets & Goody Bag + business package VIP pair of tickets to our LIVE celebration show plus your name engraved on a specially commissioned ‘BDC Heroes' plaque for permanent display on the exterior of our building

£1,000 or more

£1000 reward

VIP Tickets, Champaign Reception & Goody Bag plus Enjoy a LIFETIME of VIP Ticket prices for BDC shows, events and masterclasses. Join our team for a complimentary champagne buffet reception with an intimate VIP show experience at our studios. Name / busies engraved on a specially commissioned ‘BDC Heroes' plaque for permanent display on the exterior of our building

£6 or more

Studio fundraiser show at our studios 30th October

October 30th 6-8:30pm we will be performing a mix of hip hop, contemporary, ballet, musical theatre and Jazz come along and enjoy the show - just keep your confirmation email and present on entry - one price for each seat.

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