Elsie and Bobby Smith started giving dancing lesson in Monarch Parade in the early 1940s, according to a contributor to the Facebook Mitcham History Group. An ad from 1962 said that they had been established for 21 years, giving their start year as 1941.
In 1947, this ad shows that they were teaching at the Majestic cinema:
Learn to Dance at Mitcham’s Most MODERN BALLROOM
Romany School of Dancing
Elsie & Bobby Smith (N.A.T.D.)
now at Majestic Mitcham.
Beginners Classes : Mon & Thurs
Intermediate Classes : Tues & Fri
Dances : Wed & Sat.
Private Lessons by Appointment
This ad from 1959 shows that they had moved to their own premises, at the rear of 484 London Road:
Elsie and Bobby Smith, N.A.T.D., invite you to dance at the
482, London Road, Mitcham.
Strict beginners classes, Mondays & Thursdays, 8-10.30, 2/6.
Beginners and Intermediate
Old Time 8-11 2/6.
Over 25’s Beginners 8-11
Children’s Ballroom Class
SATURDAY CLUB DANCES TO “ROMANY BAND”.
PRIVATE LESSONS BY APPOINTMENT DAILY
For Enquiries : ‘Phone MITCHAM 4329.
STAGE BRANCH : Ballet – Tap – Modern Dance – Acrobatic Class Daily
This 1953 OS map shows the Dance Hall:
1953 OS Map
Ad from 1962 shows the introduction of a ‘Rock n Roll Club’ on Saturday nights:
Text of ad:
‘ROMANY’ School of Dancing
Est. 21 years
Principals : Elsie and Bobby Smith, N.A.T.D.
482 LONDON RD, MITCHAM (opp. Mitcham Stn.). Tel. MIT 4329
Monday – BEGINNERS ONLY, expert tuition, 8-10.30 p.m. 2/6
Tuesday – HOLIDAY COURSE CLASS, 8-10.30 p.m. ……… 2/6
(Special tuition for every kind of holiday dancing)
Thursday – BEGINNERS and INTERMEDIATE, 8-10.30 p.m. 2/6
Friday – Over 25s, Beginners and Intermediate, 8-10.30 p.m. 2/6
Saturday morning – Children’s Ballroom, 10.30 a.m. – 12 noon ……1/-
Saturday night – ROCK ’N’ ROLL CLUB, 7.30-11 p.m. …… 3/-
Sunday – OLD TIME CLASS and PRACTICE, 7.30-10.30 p.m. 3/-
STAGE BRANCH – Tuesdays and Fridays, 4.30 p.m.
Private Lessons Daily
Maps are reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland.