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25/12/2018 18:45 GMT

Strictly Come Dancing's 2018 Christmas Special: Aston Merrygold Beats Caroline Flack To Lift Silver Star Trophy

Both of them scored a perfect 40, but it was the JLS singer who won over the studio audience.

Aston Merrygold has beaten former ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ winner Caroline Flack to be crowned the show’s Christmas champion. 

The former JLS singer returned to the ballroom alongside five other ex-contestants for a festive special of the show, which aired on Christmas Day. 

BBC
Aston Merrygold and Janette Manrara have been crowned 'Strictly' Christmas champions

He and partner Janette Manrara lifted the special Christmas Silver Star trophy after their impressive ‘Nutcracker’-themed Jive to ‘What Christmas Means To Me’ scored them a perfect score of 40 with the judges. 

It came complete with a breakdance section, complete with one of Aston’s trademark backflips, made famous by his days in boyband JLS. 

Caroline, who won the show in 2014, also scored full points as she performed a Charleston with Gorka Marquez to ‘Santa Claus Is Coming To Town’ while dressed as Pinocchio.

However, when the results of the studio audience vote were combined with the judges’ scores, it was Aston who came out on top.

BBC
Caroline Flack returned to the ballroom four years after her win

Aston’s win was all the sweeter given his controversial elimination from the show in 2017, with judge Craig Revel Horwood recently conceding he “was robbed”.  

Elsewhere, Ann Widdecombe and Anton Du Beke brought the laughs as they dressed up as the ugly sisters from ‘Cinderella’ to perform an American Smooth. 

However, the routine, set to ‘Sisters’ from the film ‘White Christmas’, failed to impress Craig, who awarded it just two points, contributing to a score of 22 overall.

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Ann Widdecombe and Anton Du Beke

The show also saw the return of ‘EastEnders’ star Jake Wood to the ballroom, where he teamed up with new pro Luba Mushtuk. 

The soap actor, who plays Max Branning in the BBC series, proved his snake hips were still well oiled as he scored 39 points for his Cha Cha Cha to ‘Could It Be Magic?‘, which saw him dressed as the frog from ‘The Princess And The Frog’. 

BBC
Jake Wood was paired with new dancer Luba Mushtuk

Cricketer Michael Vaughn and partner Nadiya Bychkova were joined by a real life St Bernard dog for their ‘Peter Pan’-themed Viennese Waltz to ’Please Come Home For Christmas, which won them 30 points.

Finally, ‘Countryfile’ presenter Anita Rani, who was paired up with Neil Jones, scored 35 for her Foxtrot set to ‘Winter Wonderland’, which was inspired by the story of ‘The Snowman’.

BBC
Michael Vaughan's routine was themed around Peter Pan
BBC
Neil Jones finally got a partner in the form of Anita Rani

The festive special also saw a huge group routine to ‘I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday’, as well as a spell-binding performance of ‘Silent Night’ from the Kingdom Choir, who rose to fame after singing at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding.

Photo gallery 'Strictly Come Dancing': All The Winners See Gallery