Ann Widdecombe reunites with Anton Du Beke for Strictly Come Dancing's Christmas special as Caroline Flack dances with Gorka Marquez and Neil Jones finally gets a celebrity partner

The former politician, 71, and dancing smoothie Anton, 52, are among a string of tantalising partnerships announced by the show today.

Aston Merrygold, 30, will also get to dance with original partner Janette Manrara, 34, but elsewhere it's all change for the celebrity dancers.

Caroline Flack, 39, will dance with Gorka Marquez, 28, rather than Pasha Kovalev, who she won the show with back in 2014.

EastEnders star Jake Wood, 46, will be with a new professional, 28-year-old Luba Mushtuk, while cricketer Michael Vaughan, 44, is going to dance with Lee Ryan's former pro dancer Nadiya Bychkova, 29.

Countryfile's Anita Rani, 41, will also have an exciting new partner in Neil Jones.


The 35-year-old dancer was flung into the spotlight last month when his wife Katya was caught kissing Seann Walsh.

Interestingly, there is no place on the show for Katya while Neil, who normally only takes part in the group dances rather than with the stars, has been given a promotion.

Well, it's about time he had a change of fortunes.

The Strictly Christmas special is expected to air on Christmas Day on BBC1 and rehearsals are already underway.

The Sun revealed Strictly legend Ann would be returning to the show earlier this month.

A show insider said: “Ann has always been one of Strictly’s most memorable and hilarious contenders.

“The Christmas special is always a light-hearted, fun episode and so it was a no-brainer to get Ann on board to add to the comedy of it.

Producers will be pulling out all the stops to match some of her most glorious moments from the 2010 series.

Memorable routines involved Ann flying on wires, a Titanic theme and Anton swinging Ann around the dancefloor by one ankle and one wrist.


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