A pioneering project allowing Wiganers with disabilities to enjoy all the fun of a club night has celebrated its fifth birthday.
Dozens of revellers descended on Cafe Stella in Leigh to mark the milestone anniversary for the monthly Fusion nights.
The evenings of music, dancing and socialising are run by community interest company Just BU, with DJ John White who helped get things up and running still offering advice in the background.
Over the years the nights at the King Street venue have allowed people with a range of disabilities to enjoy clubbing which could be difficult at other nightspots in the borough. And for many of the regulars going to Fusion has proved a life-defining experience.
Alex and Zoe Grundy, who run Cafe Stella, spoke of their pride at being involved in Fusion’s ongoing success.
Zoe said: “The fifth anniversary was a great success. It was really busy and everyone had a really good time. We had balloons and confetti and the regulars all got us thank you cards, which was just lovely.
“I’m really proud to be involved in this and I’m so glad Justin approached us to do it. It was originally going to be a one-off night so the fact we have been doing it monthly for five years shows what a success it is. It’s now like a big family. Everyone knows each other and we all look forward to it.
“We’ve created a safe environment where they can all come and be themselves, listen to the type of music they want and dance with no-one judging them. They can come to Fusion and enjoy themselves with like-minded people. We’ve had a couple of people who have started dating and one couple has got engaged.
“We’re just hoping we can now carry on and keep encouraging new people to try it out to see if they like it.”
Fusion is on the last Tuesday of each month at Cafe Stella in Leigh from 7.30pm until 10.30pm. First-time attendees get in free and after that it is £2.50 or £4 for joint entry with a support worker or personal assistant.