Not logged in - Login

British Dance Council

See also: Categories: Organizations, Federation

Category: WDC Member Federation
Officially Founded: 1929
Current President: Bryan Allen
Headquarters: United Kingdom


The British Dance Council (BDC) was formed in 1929 and is the official full member federation of the World Dance Council for Britain. It is the recognized governing body for Ballroom, Latin, Sequence Dancing & Freestyle/Disco dance in the United Kingdom.


The British Dance Council was formed in 1929 as the Official Board of Ballroom Dancing (OBBD). The name was subsequently changed in 1985 to the British Council of Ballroom Dancing and to the British Dance Council in 1996.

The British Dance Council was originally formed to establish uniformity in the teaching of Ballroom Dance nationwide, although its responsibility is now extensive, both in the UK and abroad. The primary function of the BDC is to devise and oversee the rules for competitive dancing. All dance competitions in the UK, both Amateur and Professional are governed by BDC rules. The BDC is also the national awarding body for championship titles in the UK.

Standardization is also the other key function of the BDC. There are a number of leading dance organizations in the UK, and each of these organisations have slight differences in technique and vocabulary. The BDC works to ensure that where possible, teachers from any organization, will be teaching dance the same way. This is particularly important competitively, to make sure that all dancers can understand and perform their dances within the BDC rules, regardless of which dance organization they trained with.

The work of the current BDC covers all aspects of Social Dance. It grants the right for individuals or organizations to run dance championships either open to the world or restricted to Britain and Northern Ireland in Professional Ballroom, Latin, Sequence Dancing (Old Time and Modern) as well as corresponding Amateur events, covering various age groups.


The first move to rationalize the world of Social Dance was on May 12th, 1920 when the British Dancing Times magazine held an “Informal Conference” of teachers of Ballroom Dancing in the Grafton Galleries. Anyone who was interested could attend, and as a result, attendance of some 200 was achieved. Philip J. S. Richardson O.B.E. (Order of the British Empire), editor of the Dancing Times, was elected to the Chair. This original conference led to three further conferences resulting in a report in 1921 establishing the basic forms for One-Step, Foxtrot, Waltz and Tango. A fourth conference was held in 1922.

Over the period of the next seven years, three more conferences were held setting forth rules for guidance in such matters as Amateur status. This informal committee continued its work and in 1929 adopted the title of “Official Board of Ballroom Dancing” that in 1985 changed its name to the British Council of Ballroom Dancing.

In this brief history, it is appropriate that the original 1929 Committee be identified. It comprised of:

The British Dance Council, then known as the Official Board of Ballroom Dancing, was instrumental in the formation of the International Council of Ballroom Dancing, now the World Dance Council.

Presidents and Chairmen

Year(s) President Chairman
2010 - present Bryan Allen Bryan Allen
2004 - 2009 Len Armstrong Len Armstrong
1990 - 2003, inclusive Freddie Boultwood Freddie Boultwood
1974 - 1989, inclusive Leonard Morgan Leonard Morgan
1973 Alex Warren Stan Atack
1969 - 1972, inclusive Alex Warren Wilfred Orange
1965 - 1968, inclusive Alex Warren Leonard Morgan
1964 - Alex Warren
1963 Arthur Franks Alex Warren
1959 - 1963 P. J. S. Richardson Arthur Franks
1929 - 1958, inclusive - P. J. S. Richardson


Dance Teaching Organizations

Professional Dancers Organizations

Amateur Dancers Organizations

Public Companies

  • Blackpool Entertainment Company Limited

Affiliate Members

  • Streetdance International (SDI)


  • The Crown Entertainment Centres Ltd.

Name Changes

  • 1929 - Official Board of Ballroom Dancing (OBBD)
  • 1985 - British Council of Ballroom Dancing
  • 1996 - British Dance Council (BDC)


The major championships of the British Dance Council are the British Open Professional and the British National Professional in both Ballroom and Latin. In the last quarter of a century, the following British couples have been winners on more than one occasion in the Open Championships:



British National Professional Ballroom (from 1975)

British National Professional Latin (from 1975)

British Open Professional Ballroom (Since Inception)

British Open Professional Latin (Since Inception)

Notable Figures of the British Dance Council (Post War to Date)

Ratings, Reviews & Comments

How it works

WikiDanceSport has been created for the DanceSport community to collaboratively organize and promote this sport throughout the world. Anyone who can access this site can edit most of its articles and create new ones.

Only registered users may create a new article. Some particularly controversial, sensitive and/or vandalism-prone pages are protected to some degree from public alteration. A particularly contentious article may be locked so that only administrators are able to make changes.

In certain cases, all editors are allowed to submit modifications, but review is required for some editors, depending on certain conditions.