The United Kingdom Equality Dance Council (UKEDC) was first founded in May 2006, formerly known as the UK Same Sex Dance Council (UKSSDC). The primary aim of the Council is to represent the interests of equality dancers in the UK, as well as their trainers, the adjudicators, and competition organisers on a worldwide basis. This has included setting out the framework of rules for Equality Dance competitions, which are currently adopted by UK competition organisers.

Download our constitution and bylaws.

Today, the Council continues its campaign to increase the awareness of, and participation in, equality dance competitions. This includes offering a network of advice and providing a directory of all competitions and social events.

Meet the committee

Tom Dane


Tom has been the Chair of the UKEDC since December 2022. He was elected to the Committee in 2018 and has acted as treasurer and secretary. Tom also sits on the board of the European Same-Sex Dance Association and chairs its Competition Rules Working Group.

Tom had his first dance lessons in 1999 while studying in Germany and subsequently competed in waltz for Bristol University. A few years later he discovered the equality dance scene in London and went on to compete in numerous Eurogames, the World Outgames in Miami, the Gay Games in Paris and Guadalajara as well as smaller equality competitions across Europe. While he enjoys the challenge of competing, it is the warmth and friendliness of the equality scene that keeps him dancing and he has made many friends as a result. Through his role on the UKEDC Committee, Tom wants to help equality dancing, both competitive and social, reach as wide an audience as possible so others can share Tom’s experience of dancing in this welcoming and diverse environment.

By day, Tom is a qualified chartered accountant.

Thorsten Dreyer


Thorsten started dancing in Germany when he was twelve and competed in mainstream competitions until the age of 21. Alongside competing he was also involved in the German Dance Sport Association’s youth committee, working on widening participation in dance sport. In his early 30s he discovered equality dancing in London where he became a member of Guyz in Sync. Thorsten has competed in equality dance competitions in Italy, Denmark, the Netherlands, Hungary, France, Germany, Austria, Sweden and the USA. He enjoys social dancing and wants to increase the opportunities for those interested in equality dance across the UK.

Thorsten was co-opted onto the committee in March 2022 and has been the secretary since January 2023. Thorsten led the development of the UKEDC Strategy 2023 – 2028, helped to deliver the UKEDC Ball 2023, and joined the European Same-Sex Dance Association diversity working group.

Norma Daykin

General Committee Member

Norma is an associate ballroom dance teacher of the ISTD, having first qualified as a salsa teacher with the UKA in 2009. Based in Bristol, she leads Bristol Equality Dance and hosts the Bristol Equality Tea Dance with Jacky’s/Charles’ Jukebox, which is attended by dancers from across the UK. She has recently launched the Torquay Women’s Dance Weekend with Louise Sampson. Norma has danced since childhood and was delighted to discover the same sex/equality dance scene in the 1990s. She has been a regular attendee and participant in equality dance social events and competitions. She is keen to develop opportunities for Equality dancers outside London as well as strengthen connections between dancers across the UK. 

Emily Spoor

General Committee Member

Em (she/her) is a queer dancer and a 2024 committee newcomer! She picked up ballroom and Latin at university and, after stepping away from the mainstream circuit in 2019, Em now competes 10 dance with her dance partner Sarah. Together they have had national and international success, medalling in the PJ Trophy, UKEO, and Eurogames.

Em loves social dancing and stoning dance costumes, and believes the samba bounce action is her personal nemesis. She currently lives in Birmingham with her partner, Chloe, and rescue kitten, Robert.

As a UKEDC committee member Em is keen to promote equality dancing outside of London and welcomes others from the Midlands who are interested to get in touch.

Alun Richards

Vice Chair

Alun lives in Cardiff and has been out since he was 40 – he’s 66 now. He was married and has a son and a granddaughter. With his partner he has been running social dancing events in Cardiff for the past 11 years, trying vigorously to encourage dancing from all sectors of society. They actively encourage and advertise as a mixed straight, same-sex, gay, queer group and they have equality couples joining them. Having been brought up in a religious group where his family rejected him when he came out, Alun fights vigorously for LGBTQ+ equality, recognition, and legislation. 

Lori Pearce – Altendorff

General Committee Member

Lori learnt to dance with her Grandma in the 1950s and took NATD ballroom medals to gold cross standard in the 1960s. It wasn’t until 1990 when she and a group of friends found Jo Purvis’ LGBT tea dances at the Paradise Club, Islington that she started to partner dance again. She competes with her life-partner, Crista, in equality competitions. They organised the equality dance competition in Brighton in 2017. Trained at Dance South, they also compete in regional and national medallist competitions at their grade and age level. Lori, leading Crista, won the over 65s gold Latin medallist of the year championship at Blackpool in 2021.

Lori was co-opted onto the UKEDC committee in March 2022. Since then she has contributed to the strategy document and helped run the UKEDC Ball and Awards. She is also a member of the European Same-Sex Dance Association and sits on its diversity working group.

Jo Hunt

Communications & Publicity

Jo has been dancing all her adult life. She is the dance teacher for the equality dance club in Brighton, Cheek 2 Cheek and alongside her wife Louise competes on the equality dance circuit. They compete in Latin and their biggest achievement was placing Silver at the World Championships 2018, making them the then top UK female Latin couple. Jo and Louise have their own business Savoy Entertainment in which they teach, perform and hold their own events. 

Jo was co-opted in 2019 initially as membership secretary and more recently in communications and publicity. Jo has contributed to the strategy document and helped to deliver the 2023 UKEDC ball.

Tessa Cleaver


Tessa has danced all her adult life. She discovered ballroom and Latin dancing in the early ’90s at Ralf and Tony’s classes at the London Lesbian and Gay Centre, and Jo Purvis’s tea dance at the Bell and has been social dancing ever since. She was briefly a member of the Pink Dancers, and in the last few years has been competing on the equality circuit. It is through equality dancing that she found her family and her community and hopes that UKEDC can ensure that the same warmth and strength of community can be there for others.

Since joining the board in 2023 in the role of Treasurer, she has increased the amount and range of discounts available to members with dance shoe and costume providers, and is currently chairing the European Same-Sex Dance Association diversity working group.

General Committee Member