Dance school in Halifax raises money for unit where teen pupil underwent open heart surgery

Back row:  Students Zoe Finelli and  George Crossley, Mathew Cassell from Children's Heart Surgery Fund, teacher Zoe Cook and students Lucy Crossley and Lucy Buckley. Front row: James Buckley, Amelia Taylor, Harriet Taylor, Sarah Lewis and Mathew Flinders.
Back row: Students Zoe Finelli and George Crossley, Mathew Cassell from Children's Heart Surgery Fund, teacher Zoe Cook and students Lucy Crossley and Lucy Buckley. Front row: James Buckley, Amelia Taylor, Harriet Taylor, Sarah Lewis and Mathew Flinders.

A dance school in Halifax has been fundraising for a hospital where one of its students underwent open heart surgery.

Thirteen-year-old George Crossley had to undergo the operation after doctors discovered a leaky valve and a blockage in his heart.

His mum Michelle said she had taken him to their GP after he came down with a chest infection.

“We went to the doctors thinking we would be given anti-biotics but they told us he needed open-heart surgery,” she said.

He underwent the operation at the Leeds Heart Unit in May.

“He’s OK now,” said Mrs Crossley. “He’s still very tired but I suppose that’s to be expected. He was off school for most of last year.”

George and his twin sister Lucy, from Huddersfield, are both students at Strickland Cook Theatre School, at Berwick Mill in Halifax town centre.

When pupils, parents and teachers there heard about his surgery, they decided to pick the Leeds Heart Unit as their charity for this year.

By organising several events including raffles, cake sales and car boot sales, they have collected £1,000 for the unit.

Zoe Cook, who runs the school with her mother Pamela, said: “We always like to choose a charity for children as the pupils in our school are so fortunate to be healthy enough to dance and perform and we feel it’s good for our pupils to help children less fortunate than themselves.”