KITTY Oakes, founder of Mid Cheshire School of Dancing and one of the major fundraisers for Northwich Memorial Hall, has died aged 98.

Her death on January 5 came just two months after her husband of 68 years, Len Breeze, passed away.

Born in 1910, Kitty opened her first dancing school above Burton’s on Witton Street on her 21st birthday and continued to teach and examine ballet, tap and ballroom dancing until she retired at the age of 90, in a career that took her to France, Spain and South America.

In 1953 Kitty and Len, fresh from a stint in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME) corps, opened a purpose-built studio opposite the old bus station on Chester Way. And it was there Mid Cheshire School of Dancing was born.

“Their names were as well known locally as Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers!” said son Paul.

The couple left England in 1970 to build a house in Majorca, and split their time between the Balearics and Mid Cheshire for the next 10 years.

They moved to Llandudno in 1996 to be nearer to Paul, his wife Sheila and their grandchildren Nick, Phil and Michaela. But they returned to their second home every winter until Len’s death.

“After that mum’s last wish was to visit Majorca and her friends once again,” said Paul. “And she fulfilled her wish shortly after Christmas. Less than a week after her return she died peacefully in her sleep.”

Kitty’s funeral will take place at 11am on Monday, January 19 at Colwyn Bay crematorium. For details, call Tom Owen & Son Funeral Directors on 01492 860280.