Sunday 20 October 2019

Ann Widdecombe says she could not turn down Strictly Christmas special

The former Conservative MP said she would have only danced with her dance partner Anton Du Beke.

Ann Widdecombe returns to Strictly Come Dancing (Ian West/PA)
Ann Widdecombe returns to Strictly Come Dancing (Ian West/PA)

By Alex Green, Press Association Entertainment Reporter

Ann Widdecombe has said she would have turned down the offer of appearing on Strictly Come Dancing’s Christmas special if she had not have been paired with Anton Du Beke.

The former Conservative MP, 71, will once again tread the boards at Elstree Studios alongside Du Beke.

The pair finished in sixth place in the eighth series of the BBC One show.

Widdecombe said: “I thought it wasn’t going to happen again but the invitation came and it was one I couldn’t refuse.

Ann Widdecombe and Anton Du Beke will be reunited on the Christmas special (Guy Levy/BBC/PA)

“I wouldn’t have done it with anyone else. There was never any question in my mind.

“All the other dancers have changed apart from Anton. I wouldn’t dance with anyone else.”

The former MP for Maidstone and The Weald, who has also appeared on Celebrity Big Brother, will dance the American smooth as one of the ugly sisters from Cinderella.

Du Beke, a long-running favourite among Strictly fans, will perform in drag.

Widdecombe said: “Everybody is saying to me: ‘Am I going to be dragged? Am I going to be thrown? Am I going to be spun? Am I going to be lifted?’

“All I can say is wait and see but just remember I am eight years older. I am 71 now. I was only 63 when I was doing it before.

Ann Widdecombe was popular with viewers and eventually took sixth place (Guy Levy/BBC/PA)

“It’s not quite like being thrown around when you are in your 20s. Anton never even tried this time to get me to do it in time.

“We just worked out what the moves were going to be, worked out how we were going to link them, and never mind what the dance is supposed to be. There isn’t a trace of it in the performance.”

The Strictly Come Dancing Christmas special will air on BBC One on Christmas Day at 5.30pm.

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