A memorial tea dance is to be held at Wolverhampton Civic Hall later this month to remember renowned city organist Steve Tovey, who passed away earlier this year. Steve, from Hazel Slade Cannock, had been resident organist at Wolverhampton's Civic Hall since 1993 and enjoyed an illustrious 50-year career in the music industry. He was dedicated to playing organ music in venues up and down the country, and sadly passed away suddenly in September, aged 69.

Staff at Wolverhampton Civic Hall have now organised the Steve Tovey Memorial Tea Dance on Friday, December 23, from noon to 4pm. Dancers are being asked to don Christmas jumpers and take to the floor, where popular organists Keith Tomlin and Cameron Lloyd will play ballroom, sequence, latin and line dance favourites on electric organs. City of Wolverhampton Council Cabinet Member for City Economy, Councillor John Reynolds, said: “Steve was a driving force on the Midlands music scene.

“He rekindled tea dances here at the Civic Hall in the 1990s, which were then a regular fixture until the Civic closed at the start of this year for renovation work. “It is a fitting tribute to hold a memorial tea dance and organisers are asking that people come along in Christmas jumpers and enjoy lots of dances, just as Steve would have liked.” Steve, who was married to Ann and had three daughters, grew up in Aston and spent a quarter of a century playing the iconic Compton organ at Birmingham Odeon cinema.

It was the leading stage venue in the city before the arrival of Symphony Hall and the NEC, and he played alongside the likes of Judy Garland, Cary Grant and Cliff Richard. Tickets for the tea dance cost £3 on the door and include a cup of tea and a biscuit. A raffle is planned, with a Christmas cake in the shape of the Civic’s famous Compton organ as the top prize.