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'Strictly Come Dancing' Christmas Special Unveils Celebrity Contestants

Can you believe it's almost that time again?!

08/11/2016 08:34

The celebrities taking part in this year’s ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ Christmas special have been confirmed. 

Six former contestants will be taking to the floor for the festive extravaganza, which will air on BBC One on Christmas Day. 

BBC
Claudia Winkleman and Tess Daly will host the 'Strictly' Christmas special

Olympian and presenter Denise Lewis, who competed in series two of the BBC ballroom competition will be returning alongside series 12 finalist and former Saturdays singer Frankie Bridge, and writer Pamela Stephenson from series eight.

The gents also taking part are celebrity chef Ainsley Harriott, who competed in last year’s series and series five contestant and former ‘Blue Peter’ presenter Gethin Jones

In an unusual move, one of this year’s eliminated contestants will also be returning, as Melvin Odoom will be participating, having been the first celebrity to be voted off the current series. 

BBC
Frakie Bridge is returning for the special

Each contestant will perform an enchanting routine with a yet-to-be-announced professional dancer, in a bid to be crowned Christmas champions. 

The festive special will also mark the final appearance of Head Judge Len Goodman, who announced he will be bowing out at the end of the year. 

For the second year running, it will be hosted by Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman, as Bruce Forsyth is currently too unwell to return to present. 

BBC
We can't wait to see Ainsley's moves again

When he left the show in 2014, he agreed to still front the annual Children In Need and Christmas specials, but he is still recovering from surgery to two life-threatening aneurysms last winter. 

His wife Wilnelia Forsyth offered an update on his health in the latest issue of You magazine, revealing he is still struggling to move after his operation.

“He’s the man I fell in love with because his brain is still there,” she said. “He has a bit of a problem moving but we still laugh and talk.

“I pray, I believe. The main thing is that he’s doing well. The pain is more emotional; sometimes we cry, but mostly we laugh.”

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