THE founder of a Widnes dance and theatre school hopes to leave a lasting legacy for up-and-coming performing arts pupils in the town.
Louis Neeves, who has been acting for more than 30 years, says Halton Entertainment Arts Regional Theatre School (HEARTS) needs a transplant in the form of a new building to allow its young pupils to develop into top-class performers.
Mr Neeves, who used to be managed by Bob Carolgees, of Spit The Dog fame, said: 'We are pushing for a theatre in Widnes. We have outgrown our current base in All Saints School and we need somewhere bigger.
'Plus we sell out the Upton Community Centre every year for our pantomimes and we would like to expand.
'It's my dream to get a theatre for talented youngsters at HEARTS. I have been in touch with councillors and have the backing of Loose Music and Connections as we need somewhere in Widnes which is purpose-built for performing arts students.'
Mr Neeves' school was founded in 2000 after St Basil's and All Saints Church asked him and a group of volunteers to perform a panto for the community. It started off with a £250 grant and now has a huge membership, with youngsters starting as young as three.
He added: 'We have drafted in professional coaches to teach our students.'
HEARTS is already in preparation for its 2007 panto Puss In Boots and Mr Neeves is keen to get new people involved. He can be contacted on 07734 055287.