POLE vaulting its way as this month's first Trader of the Week winner is Cumbria Pole Art.

Barrow born and bred, Sarah Jones, 36, runs the pole and aerial school at the Old Methodist Church Hall, on Risedale Road.

Mrs Jones started up the acrobatic and fitness commerce 10 years ago in her bedroom and now provides lessons at centres across Cumbria in Barrow and Carlisle.

She said: “I'm very pleased that we've won this award.

"Pole art is a combination of gymnastics, aerobics and ballet rolled into one.

"Admittedly, people hear the word 'pole' and associate it with something more narrow-minded, but actually learning this art form can massively help with confidence and self-esteem.

"A lot of people who first start pole art think they're not strong enough, but over time they get better and better, and with that they become stronger and more fitter.

"Anyone can do it."

After starting the business back in 2009, Mrs Jones, who lives in Chester, moved into the Risedale Road location in July 2013 after a stint on Dalton Road.

She soon branched out to north Cumbria, opening up a second school under the same name at the Atlas Works, on Nelson Street.

Sharon Brown, who nominated the gymnastics school, said: "I would recommend Cumbria Pole and Aerial Arts for Trader of the Week.

"Its an amazing place.

"It gives us a really enjoyable way to keep fit and it has a super friendly and supportive atmosphere.

"It also gives back to the community providing entertainment at places such as Barrow Carnival and Kick-Off for Dementia.

"It also does fundraising.

"Last year there was a sponsored 'aerial-athlon' and in a few weeks time there will be a fancy-dress week raising money for the North West Air Ambulance."

Mrs Jones said: "I would like to thank my staff both professionally and personally.

"I now have healthy twin boys, who are four in November, but my pregnancy was premature.

"I had them at 25 weeks, however, my incredible staff helped me during this difficult time."

Going forward, Cumbria Pole Art will be adding more classes to its studio in Carlisle, and will soon be performing at Barrow venue, Cloud 9.

If you would like to nominate a business for Trader of the Week, send your nomination to: samuel.mckeown@newsquest.co.uk, with a brief description why they should receive the award.