SHOPPERS in a North-East town were encouraged to get their dancing shoes and join preparations for a summer dance festival.

The Darlington Dance Festival takes place on July 12 and passers-by were given a flavour of the event with a dance in the Market Square today (Wednesday, June 25).

Dance tutors performed a routine that will be used for a public mass dance in the square during the festival.

Residents are invited to practice the routine at the Dolphin Centre over two sessions - at noon on June 30 and July 7 - so they know the steps and can join in on the day.

About 600 people are already expected to take part in the mass dance on July 12, between 1pm and 2.30pm.

Other performances at the festival will include Ruff Diamond - finalists in Sky’s 1’s Got to Dance 2013 - Bionic Funk, Urban Kaos, Darlington Indian Classic Dancers and Darlington Operatic Society among others.

The festival aims to bring professional and amateur dancers of all types and abilities together to share their love of dancing.