Ed’s Strictly tribute to brother who loved music

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A Northampton rugby player will dance in memory of his brother in Strictly Northampton 2012.

Edward St John Smythe, who plays for Old Northamptonians Rugby Club, will take part in the competition at the Royal & Derngate on Saturday, November 24.

The 55-year-old’s brother Patrick, who was also a rugby player, died of cancer, aged 50, over two years ago.

Mr Smythe, who works at Shepherd & Co solicitors, said his brother was cared for by Macmillan nurses, and added: “From that point of view I couldn’t say no to taking part in the competition. I know how important the cause is. I know it first-hand.”

He added: “He would have found it very amusing and he would be totally up for it. He was a big lover of music, as am I.”

Other contestants include ITV Daybreak weather girl Laura Tobin; Miss Northampton Nadina Knight; Northamptonshire Community Foundation fund development manager, Jessica Pilkington; manager of Outcast Hair Salon, Vicky Panting; owner of Fong Spa Beauty, Yin Jeune; leader of Northampton Borough Council, David Mackintosh; dog trainer, Graeme “The Dogfather” Hall; Assistant Chief Constable of Northamptonshire Police, Andy Frost; founder of Far Cotton Amateur Boxing Club, John Daly; Royal & Derngate operations manager Richard Clinton; Chron reporter Ian Gallagher; Kyle Cherry, who is in the England under-17s badminton team; headteacher at Lings Primary School, Leigh Wolmarans; Barclaycard employee Gary McMahon; and owner of The Works Fancy Dress shop, Patricia Coleman. For tickets call Northampton 624811.

Edward is paired with dancer Sue Castle in the competition, which will support the Chronicle & Echo and Macmillan Cancer Support’s appeal to raise £1.55m to help fund a new haemotology unit at Northampton General Hospital.
He said: “I’m not scared to make a fool of myself when it comes to doing a bit of dancing just for fun. I just want to see how far I can get in it. It will be great to learn some dance moves properly and some ballroom dancing. It will be good from a fitness point of view.”
Edward, who said his rugby and solicitor friends would be there to watch him on the night, added: “Being a lawyer means I’m not shy. I’ve never been a retiring wallflower.”