Kerrianne Covell's Manager, Richard Upshall

Richard Upshall has picked up the bill for Tab’s Dance Studio in Linthorpe after it was targeted by thieves who damaged the roof

A millionaire businessman has stepped in to help the dance teacher of X Factor star Kerrianne Covell after his studio was targeted by burglars.

Thieves only got away with a 30-inch TV and a small handful of change after breaking into Tab’s Dance Studio, on Stonehouse Street in Linthorpe.

But they did leave the studio with a hefty bill for damage to the roof where they forced their way in.

Owner Tabraiz ‘Tab’ Yousaf, 28, of Middlesbrough, set up the dance studio around two years ago, after he began dancing himself aged 17, but was faced with forking out for the damage where burglars broke in as well as leaks and damp.

He said: “I was gutted at the break-in. It’s not like there’s anything to steal. They got in through the roof and took a little TV and about £5 in change.

“We don’t have the best studio but it’s our home and we love it.”

Kerrianne, who dances at Tab’s, is now signed to Dubai businessman Richard Upshall’s management label RU Listening and he visited Tab’s Studio with Kerrianne during a stay in Teesside last month.

Kerrianne, 24, of Stockton, said: “I’ve danced for years, and when I went to college I joined Janice Wilson’s in Middlesbrough. Tab taught some of the classes there and I’d always said to him he should open his own studio because he’d always wanted to.

“Janice Wilson’s eventually closed down and I wouldn’t have wanted to dance anywhere else except Tab’s. He’s an amazing teacher.

“I hadn’t been there for ages while I was doing X Factor and things, but when I went back it was so refreshing how much everyone had improved in that time.”

Kerriane frequently goes back to Tab’s when she’s in the UK and he still teaches her moves now.

Richard’s team in the UK is now working with Tab to provide funding and business and marketing support.

Richard said: “I was amazed at the quality of the classes, the performers and Tab himself as a fantastic teacher.

“I chatted with Tab and it became apparent that they were struggling with the space they had. I could see the dancers were holding themselves back due to the space and I could see they needed some work doing, but that they otherwise had the potential to be one of the best dance schools in the area, so I offered my help.

“When the studio was broken into, it just accelerated the rate at which we decided to get started.

“I asked my team, which includes builders, to assess what needs doing.”

So far the team has carried out some re-wiring, and are looking at potentially damp-proofing, moving or removing the low roof beams, plastering and re-decorating.

The work Richard’s team is to carry out is expected to cost tens of thousands of pounds, but Richard said he’s willing to spend whatever is necessary to bring the studio up to scratch.

Tab added: “I can’t thank Richard and his team enough for what they’re doing. I don’t think they know how much this means to me and my students. I can’t wait to be able push my kids even further to achieve everything they have wanted to with amazing new facilities and extra studio space.”

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