WELLINGTON businessman Stephen Waldron and his wife Melanie have had a day to remember – dining with Strictly Come Dancing stars Angela Rippon and her partner Kai Widdrington.

The couple had tea at The Ritz Hotel in London with the famous dance couple after a successful bid at a charity auction run by the Wellington charity Reminiscence Learning.

Stephen, a director of the food distribution company Somerdale International, said: “I had never been to The Ritz before and it was something I always wanted to do.

"So we bid for a tea date with Angela at the auction when we went to the charity’s anniversary ball earlier this year.

“At that stage we had no idea Angela was going to be in Strictly Come Dancing, so when the time came and she turned up with her dance partner Kai it was a real bonus.

"Angela and Kai were amazing – so friendly. It was a brilliant day.”

Former BBC newsreader Angela Rippon is patron of Reminiscence Learning and has always been a strong supporter of its work with people who live with dementia.

She said: “It was a much needed break from rehearsals for us and I’m always happy to support the work of this charity.”

Fiona Mahoney, chief executive of Reminiscence Learning, said: “We’ve always been grateful to Angela for her support.

"She generously donated this prize of tea at The Ritz.

“We are following her journey on Strictly avidly and are rooting for her every week.”

Reminiscence Learning is coming to the end of a successful year of fundraising in line with their 20th anniversary celebrations.

Monies raised throughout the course of the year have been given back to the community in the form of care home and school intergenerational projects, carer support groups, free of charge community theatre days and many other initiatives that contribute towards keeping the town of Wellington a dementia friendly community.