It was a night filled with glitz and glamour as couples from across the north-east strutted their stuff for charity.
Eight pairs of dancers took to the floor for Strictly Archie at Aberdeen’s Beach Ballroom to raise vital funds for the ARCHIE Foundation.
Weeks of preparation culminated in some stunning performances from the dancers as they wowed guests at the event while doing their bit for charity.
And eventual winners, real-life couple Rachael Gibbon and Matthew McCall, told the Evening Express what it meant to lift the Strictly Archie glitterball trophy.
The pair, who said they were using the experience to practise for their first dance at their wedding next year, were picked out by the judges for their show-stopping tango to the music Bust Your Windows.
Rachael, 29, a practice link manager for SAMH mental health charity, said of their win: “It feels amazing. The support was fantastic.
“Having our family and friends here was brilliant but we were very nervous.”
Her fiance Matthew, 29, a detective with Police Scotland, added: “It’s been great. It’s something I never thought we would do.
“I was meant to be working at the police office tonight but it’s good to be doing something for a good cause instead.
“It’s great to raise a lot of money for Archie.”
Rachael said she was surprised Matthew even took part – but is so glad he agreed.
She said: “I thought Matthew was going to run away when I asked him to do this.
“Knowing how much we have raised has been brilliant.”
The event has so far raised at least £10,000, which will go towards children’s healthcare in the north-east.
Each couple was tasked with raising at least £1,000 ahead of the evening.
Among those taking part were staff from the Royal Aberdeen Children’s Hospital (RACH) and the maternity hospital, as well as children who had previously benefitted from the foundation’s work.
The ARCHIE Foundation’s regional fundraising manager and head judge Jamie Smith said: “It’s amazing. Every couple has put their heart and soul into it. We have made over £10,000 and it has been an amazing night.
“They are all inspirational.”
Earlier in the evening, best friends Edyn Lumsden and Ava Gallacher were announced junior winners of the competition.
Edyn, eight, was born six weeks prematurely and spent time in the neonatal unit and the sick kids’ hospital. She decided to get involved with her friend Ava, nine, because they both love dancing.
Edyn said: “It feels amazing to win. We had a lot of fun.”
Ava added: “We are really glad after all the practice we put in. It feels really good to do something good for charity.”
ARCHIE’S CEO David Wood said the money raised will make a real difference.
He added: “What we try to do is make sure those children who are sick or in hospital have as good a time there as they possibly can.
“The money could be for toys or it could be for specialist equipment for a particular child. It really does make a difference.”