Winter solstice celebrations at Margate’s Nayland Rock hotel

Creative Director at Round in Circles Anna Symes and dancer Leon Williams

By Jodie Nesling

Dance sensations Queer Tango London will perform at the historic Nayland Rock Hotel as part of a weekend of events celebrating Winter Solstice.

Curated by Margate-based community dance company, Round in Circles, the festival starts with a solstice-inspired yoga class led by instructor, Geni Caloisi.

This is followed by a rumba class and special Christmas tea dance.  Ballroom, Latin and Swing will be accompanied by food and cocktails which all pay homage to the Roman winter festival, Saturnalia – an ancient rite characterised by togas, feasting and carnival.

Dancers are encouraged wear glitzy gold or togas as daylight draws in and enjoy music by virtuoso performer Ash Mukherjee (pictured above).

The following day Ray Batchelor and Gawaine Preston of Queer Tango London (pictured below) will entertain and teach in a safe and fun way. Everybody is welcome to join in. There will be frozen margaritas on offer and the chance to rip up the rule book and dance with whomever you choose and are comfortable with.

Creative Director at Round in Circles Anna Symes says after two years of lockdown she is looking forward to bringing the joy of dance in Margate.

She said: “During the pandemic rather than touring the country I was connecting much more with Margate and the joyful things that happen in nature and in particular paid attention to the winter and summer solstices.

“The social dance floor is a beautiful place to celebrate and explore these themes and in such a stunning location. There will be good food, decadent cocktails and the very best teachers and performers –  it will be a truly special weekend.”

The programme

Saturday, December 17 – Yoga

10am- 12pm visit for pricing

Saturday, December 17 – Jardin de Danse Christmas special

Rumba class:  1 – 2pm. £10 early bird booking / £12

Tea Dance:  2 – 5pm. £15 early bird booking / £17.50

Class and Dance:  £20 early bird booking / £25

Non-Dancer. £7.50 early bird booking / £9

Food and a free cocktail included

Sunday, December 18 – At the Violet Hour with Queer Tango

Class with Queer Tango London 2 – 3pm. Tickets: £10 early bird / £12

Milonga dance session 3pm – 6:30pm. Tickets: £20 early bird / £25

Class and Milonga.Tickets: £25 early bird / £30 from


Early bird tickets end on December, 12


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