Thursday 17 October 2019

Strictly 2018 age gap is smallest in show’s history

Just 32 years separates the youngest and oldest contestant.

The Strictly Come Dancing trophy
The Strictly Come Dancing trophy

By Ian Jones, Press Association

This year’s Strictly Come Dancing has the narrowest age range of contestants in the show’s history.

The youngest – Paralympic athlete Lauren Steadman – is 25, while the oldest – actor Danny John-Jules – is 57.

The gap between them is 32 years: the smallest since Strictly began in 2004.

(PA Graphics)

Last year’s series spanned a range of 34 years, from Paralympic athlete Jonnie Peacock, then aged 24, to TV and radio presenter Debbie McGee (58).

The largest ever gap between the youngest and oldest contestants was in 2016, which spanned 52 years from 18-year-old Olympic gymnast Claudia Fragapane to 70-year-old actor Lesley Joseph.

This year’s Strictly will set another age-related record.

At 57, Danny John-Jules is the youngest person in any series to hold the status of oldest contestant.

It is also only the third time in the show’s history that no contestants are aged 60 or over.

(PA Graphics)

Previous years have seen the likes of Anita Dobson (aged 62), Felicity Kendal (64), Paul Daniels (72) and Johnny Ball (74) take their turn on the dancefloor.

Pamela Stephenson became the oldest ever Strictly finalist when she finished third in 2010, aged 61.

The three series without any contestants aged 60-plus have all been in recent years: 2015, 2017 and now 2018.

PA Media

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