Stacey Dooley ‘Underestimated The Enormity’ Winning Strictly Would Have On Interest In Her Private Life

The documentary maker lifted the glitterball trophy with her boyfriend Kevin Clifton in 2018.

Stacey Dooley has admitted she underestimated the “enormity” that winning Strictly Come Dancing would have on interest in her private life.

The documentary maker won the BBC dance show in 2018 and is now in a relationship with professional dancer Kevin Clifton, who she was partnered with.

But the 33-year-old said the increased interest was misplaced because she was “painfully dull”.

Stacey Dooley
Stacey Dooley
Dave J Hogan via Getty Images

“It’s certainly changed over the last year or two,” she told Nihal Arthanayake on BBC Radio 5 Live.

“The thing is, I’m painfully dull. I am so boring. I have these people stood outside my house.

“I don’t know what they expect to see because it’s me taking out the bins in my tracksuit.”

Stacey praised BBC bosses for warning her about the implications of winning the show but said she still wasn’t prepared.

“They are fairly forthcoming at the start. They are quite transparent,” she said.

“The exec will sit you down and say that there’s this insatiable appetite for information and gossip surrounding Strictly.

“They explain that there will be people desperate to ask you questions and know about your personal life.

“I definitely underestimated the enormity of the show.

“If you do that show, unfortunately it’s one of negatives that come with it.

“But the positives far outweigh the negatives.”

Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton
Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton
Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock

Stacey also said that suggestions she was involved in Kevin’s decision to quit Strictly were “complete fantasy”.

The professional dancer announced he was departing the show after seven years last week, saying the time had come for him “to move on and focus on other areas of my life and career”.

Asked whether she was hurt by reports she had encouraged her boyfriend to quit, Stacey admitted she was initially “hurt”.

“Kevin is obviously totally incapable of making decisions for himself so I swooped in and saved the day,” Stacey joked.

“As if it’s got anything to do with me, what he does for a living.

“I think he’s got things that are lined up that I’ll let him tell people about.”

She added: “At the start it hurts but you have to realise it’s like story time. It’s complete fantasy…”

Nihal Arthanayake is on BBC Radio 5 Live every Monday to Thursday between 1pm and 4pm.

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