Annie Norris who runs Pure-Studios in Hereford has told Your Herefordshire about how the COVID-19 lockdown has left her business in limbo.

Annie who is also an award winning dancer told Your Herefordshire “We were pretty sure the lockdown was imminent in the middle of March. We were then met with two groups of people. The first group demanding refunds instantly, and the other (much larger group) telling us to hold their payments until we re-opened or to keep any payments. 

“Within 24 hours Pure-Studios moved online and started to offer a variety of class suitable for all levels. We did this for a few reasons. Firstly to keep our community together because over the years we have developed a friendly caring group of people and secondly to help keep the studio alive and to be able to pay our instructors while they have no other work.

“We decided to not teach any pole or aerial group online classes because not all our students have equipment at home and we didn’t want anyone feeling left out. We teach cardio, mobility and flexibility work for splits and back bends, contemporary, Saturday Night (not Corona) Fever dance classes and so much more.”

Annie added “On Sunday’s we host a coffee morning where anyone (whether they’ve been to us before or not) can log on and we sit, sometimes for an hour sometimes two and chat about our week and how we are all feeling.

“The online classes and community at Pure has really helped many people including myself stay positive in a world which seems to be falling apart. We’ve had a lot of people message and say thank you for helping to keep their mental health level up in these times. 

“We have a donate button on our website store as well where students have dropped us a fiver here and there too.

“Since lockdown is being lifted we are itching to get back. This has been the hardest bit so far. While everyone was locked down it was much easier to accept but now seeing everyone crowded in pubs and bars full to the brim with no PPE, it’s difficult to understand why we are not allowed to open, even for private tuition in our huge space.

“We are ready to go with social distancing measures in place, buckets of bleach, a 12 page reopening policy in place, instructors with full training and PPE. We are keeping our fingers crossed that it is not too long before we can welcome people back to the world of being upside down.”