Former Royal Navy rating Allan Gregory was working as a warehouse driver when he was signed off on long term sick. While he was off work he started helping his dance partner Jan by DJ’ing for her dance classes and realised he would like to do it for a full time job.
Allan decided to explore becoming self-employed, and turned to St Helens Chamber’s Start-up team and the Enterprise Hub for support to start his business JanAllan Dance Associates.
Allan Commented: “Myself and my dance partner Jan appear to be good at what we do and we get a lot of compliments when we dance. I love dancing and its great having a hobby as a job, what more could I want?
“That first year when I was sick and DJ’ing for Jan I thought, ‘I can do this, I can make a living’, so I went self-employed.
“Now I’m earning enough to live on and pay my mortgage. I don’t charge the earth to DJ but I’m making enough to live on. I can get up at half nine in the morning if I’m not teaching, and can work flexible hours. It’s absolutely fantastic and I love it.”
Allan met with a dedicated business start-up adviser who supported him with writing his business plan, and also attended the Chamber’s free ‘Understanding Enterprise’ workshops where he learnt the fundamentals of running a business.
He added: “The very beginning was brilliant it set my mind at ease, I had no idea how to do the books or anything like that or the legal side of things.
“Stella mentored me, she showed me how to do my tax returns and gave me the template for all my books. It was absolutely fantastic.”
JanAllan Dance Associates offers a range of entertainment including dance tuition, private dance lessons, mobile DJ, dance holidays and afternoon and evening socials.
Now in his second year of trading, Allan is looking to reach a younger market with his dance classes and has future plans to find his own dance studio.
“This year I have a valentine’s dance coming up which I hope will be a success. I also love the DJ side of the business, I have hit the right formula and play the right music because of the background in dance I know what will get people on the dancefloor.”
St Helens Chamber is part of Enterprise Hub, the enterprise gateway for business start-up support in Merseyside. Offering expert advice and support to anyone thinking about starting a business including help to:
- Understand the process of starting a business
- Research a business idea
- Build a comprehensive business plan
- Develop a marketing plan
- Create financial forecasts to understand the costs of running your business and potential income
- Identify sources of finance to get started
Enterprise Hub is funded by the European Regional Development Fund. For more information about the support available from St Helens Chamber to start a business, call 0845 340 9980, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit