An Erith woman who founded an affordable alternative to posh stage schools says Bexley is lacking affordable arts programmes for passionate youngsters.

Jade Flannery, 26, launched her Theatre Box Performing Arts school back in March in response to a lack of affordable and accessible classes in the area for her children, something which she believes is prohibiting other local kids from exploring and engaging with the arts.

Classes, which take place twice a week at The Exchange space in Erith's Old Library, range between stage performing and street dancing with parents only paying enough to cover the school's operational costs.

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Jade Flannery, 26, was blown away by the response from parents who's kids attend the school

The mum of two, who is also currently in her final year at the University of Greenwich, explained that she started her school with the aim of creating a space which is "accessible to everyone", regardless of their background.

"The whole reason I set it up was because I came from a family which couldn't afford to send me to big stage schools when I was younger even though I really wanted to.

"I read somewhere that people were more afraid of public speaking than dying and I just think that needs to be addressed with kids.

"They need to be unified by something and I think performing arts can help there," she said.

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Some of Jade's pupils practising hard ahead of their debut performance

After receiving keen interest from parents in the neighbourhood, Ms Flannery and her team have been working hard with their students ahead of their debut performance at the end of the month.

"I just honestly cannot tell you how proud I feel about them.

"There are kids who came to the first class and couldn't even say their name properly who are now going to be performing on stage at the end of the month.

"I’m just so grateful that I was able to share something that I love with them," said Ms Flannery.