Tributes to ‘inspirational’ Chesterfield teacher and Kickers Dance Studio founder Sue Jones following her death
Tributes have poured in for an inspirational Chesterfield dance teacher who has died.
Sue Jones, director and founder, of Kickers Dance Studio, tutored thousands of students during a career spanning more than half a century.
Some of her protegés went on to dance with the stars including Little Mix, Take That, Kylie Minogue, Sir Elton John, Tina Turner, Prince and Sir Cliff Richard.
Sue’s daughters, Kelly, Becca, Laurie and Jenna said: “We are heartbroken but so very proud of the legacy she has left behind.”
Alison Kaushik, an ex-student and parent, said, “Sue built a successful dance school, won highly prestigious accolades and was an inspirational teacher. Overwhelmingly, though, everyone remembers how they felt in her company. To leave such a lasting impression on generations of dancers and their families is the greatest achievement and the most beautiful legacy.”
A statement posted on Facebook on Sunday said: “It is with a sad heart that we have to inform you that the director and founder of Kickers Dance Studio, a much respected and admired examiner and teacher of the AAD Association the wonderful Sue Jones has sadly passed away.
“Sue was an incredible force and inspiration in the dancing world and played a huge part in so many young performers lives.
“Sue will be sorely missed by all who had the privilege to know and work with her. She was loved by so many.
“She will always be remembered for the true inspiration she was and the heart of Kickers - "Simply the Best".
Hundreds of tributes to 69-year-old Sue have been posted on social media.
Cassie Barnes posted: “Dancing has been such a huge part of my life all thanks to Sue! She created a community full of love, passion and friendship and I have incredible memories I will treasure forever!”
Jenni Tew said: “She shaped the lives of many young dancers and has left an immensely successful legacy behind."
Sue’s teaching career began more than half a century ago when, at the age of just 15, she opened the Spire Academy of Dance at the old Catholic Church hall in New Whittington.
After the Catholic hall was knocked down, Sue moved to St Barnabas Church in New Whittington and set up other classes at Holme Hall Community Centre, Whitecotes School at Boythorpe, Eagle Club in Newbold and in a school hall in Eckington.
In 1982 her business, which was now called Kickers, moved to Sheffield Road, Whittington Moor where it still operates.
Married to Kevin Fogg, Sue handed down her dancing talent to their daughters with Kelly running the Brampton branch of Kickers, Rebecca and Jenna teaching at Kickers and Laurie becoming a professional dancer on cruise ships.
Sue never had a burning ambition to be a professional dancer. In an interview to mark her 50th year of teaching in 2017, she told the Derbyshire Times that she always wanted to be a teacher.
Her joy shone through as she talked about her former students becoming backing dancers for the biggest stars in the music business. Sue said: “I feel very proud of them but they have done a lot themselves and they should feel proud of their achievements.”