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'Strictly Come Dancing' host Claudia Winkleman reveals why she almost quit the show

Strictly Come Dancing hosts Claudia Winkleman and Tess Daly
Strictly Come Dancing hosts Claudia Winkleman and Tess Daly (Image credit: Getty Images)

Strictly Come Dancing host Claudia Winkleman almost quit the BBC1 dancing show after fearing it might clash with an important moment in her son's life. 

Appearing on Radio 4's Woman's Hour, the mum-of-three revealed that she phoned the bosses 'in tears' because of her fear that the show would clash with her son's big move to university.

She said: "I phoned the boss of Strictly quite dramatically and said, through tears, 'Sarah I love you. I don't want to leave Strictly and Tess and I have agreed we will leave together when they're done with us, but if the first show is September 13th, I'm out and you'll have to go with somebody else.'"

Claudia added: "And there was a beat. And she said, 'Quite dramatic. We don't start that week.' I was like, 'Alright. I have to go and put up his posters'. It's not that I love him more than others love their kids, but this is something parents have to go through."

Claudia Winkleman

Claudia will be appearing in the new series of Strictly Come Dancing later this year.  (Image credit: BBC/Ray Burmiston)

Claudia has been hosting Strictly Come Dancing alongside Tess Daly since 2014, after she was brought in to replace Bruce Forsyth when he was on sick leave. 

It looks like the duo is here to stay, and we should see them welcoming new celebrities to the dance floor in the coming months.

Fans are still waiting to find out full details about the new series of Strictly, but we do know that ballroom dancer Anton Du Beke will be standing in for Bruno Tonioli on the judging panel this series. 

He'll be joined by regular judges Shirley Ballas, Oti Mabuse and Craig Revel Horwood for the 2021 competition. 

In addition to this, Janette Manrara will be swapping the dance floor for the studio, as she replaces Zoe Ball to present Strictly spin-off series It Takes Two, meaning she will not be a professional dancer in this year's competition. 

Strictly Come Dancing will air on BBC1 later this year.

Lucy Buglass

Lucy is a digital writer with WhatToWatch.com, where she writes series guides for must-watch programmes and the latest TV news. Originally from Northumberland, she graduated from Oxford Brookes University in 2016 with a degree in Film Studies and moved to London to begin a career writing about entertainment.


She is also a Rotten Tomatoes approved film critic and has a huge passion for cinema, setting up her own website Lucy Goes to Hollywood in 2017 to review films in her spare time. Her favourite genres are horror, thriller and anything crime related. When she's not writing about film and TV, you'll likely find her playing video games, reading, and trying her hand at podcasting.