The 8-day Blackpool Dance Festival is the most important, most known and legendary and famous annual ballroom dance competition of international significance worldwide. It is held in the Empress Ballroom in the Winter Gardens, Blackpool, (seaside resort in western England) since 1920.

BlackpoolDanceFestivalIt is also the largest ballroom competition: in 2003, 1,539 couples from 54 countries took part in the festival.
The festival provides space for Ballroom and Latin American dances, and also hosts the British Open Championships in various categories.
The annual World Professional Dance Championship Port is often held in Blackpool (4 times between 1989 and 2005), but is not fixed to the dance festival.

The first Blackpool Dance Festival was held during Easter week in 1920. Modern Ballroom (English Style) and Latin American dances were not yet evolved and this first festival was devoted to three games in three tempos - Waltz, Two Step and Foxtrot.
One major change was the introduction of Latin American dances, which had a great influence on the whole dance world. In 1961 British Amateur Latin dance tournament was held, followed by a professional event in 1962. These two events were upgraded to the status of Championship in 1964. Because more and more foreign competitors came to Blackpool, was decided to organize it for the British dancers. A small festival In November 1975 was the first British Closed Dance Festival held in the Empress Ballroom. The name has now changed to British National Championships.