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Strictly Inverness dancer's fundraising helps her cope with grief

By Andrew Dixon

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Lana Ingram and Amy Macleod. Picture: Callum Mackay..
Lana Ingram and Amy Macleod. Picture: Callum Mackay..

A trainee solicitor is dedicating her participation in Strictly Inverness to her late dad and granny.

Amy Macleod, originally from Breaclete, lost her dad Iain Mervyn when she was a teenager and set up the Motivated by Mervyn charity in his name, raising money for safety equipment for fishermen. Her granny Catriona Ruth died last year after having motor neurone disease (MND).

Catriona Ruth Macleod and Amy Macloed.
Catriona Ruth Macleod and Amy Macloed.

"She lived on the Isle of Lewis but I saw how much help and support we got from organisations there and wanted to help people that were in a similar position while I’m living in Inverness," said the 27-year-old, who works for Innes & Mackay.

"My dad passed away when I was 16 and since then I had set up a charity in his name. I raised money to provide sole fishermen in the Western Isles with personal locator beacons. After about seven years, I managed to supply them all and then started fundraising for MND and this year decided to do something a little different.

"Fundraising is what has helped me with my grief over the years, so it’s something I will carry on forever."

Iain Mervyn Macleod.
Iain Mervyn Macleod.

Partnered with Lana Ingram (30), from Inverness, they are learning a jive and a show dance, as well as a team dance with seven other couples who are performing on the Thursday evening of the annual dance contest.

"I’m really excited about being in one of Strictly Inverness's first same-sex couples," Amy said. "I feel that me and Lana instantly got on and have built a friendship already which has made the dancing so much fun and also think it’s helped with the trust factor for attempting lifts!

"I’m really glad to see that Strictly are moving with the times too by incorporating it."

They are among the 32 rookie dancers who are training for the area's answer to the hit BBC show when it is staged in May, while also fundraising for organisers and hosts Highland Hospice and Inverness Ice Centre.

The duo are staging a family ice skating disco at the ice centre this Saturday, as well as a tipsy tea party at the city's Kingmills Hotel on March 9 and a psychic night with Pamela Duff at Loch Ness Country House Hotel on March 14.

Amy is also holding a soup and pudding lunch on March 2 at Bernera Community Centre and a race night on March 16 and Lewis and Harris Rangers Supporters Club in Stornoway.

She added: "I also wanted to do Strictly to see if I could beat one of our bosses at Innes & Mackay, Ewan Donald, who took part in it a couple of years ago!"

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