Sir Bruce Forsyth is to step down from presenting Strictly Come Dancing after a decade fronting the hit BBC1 Saturday night show.
Sir Bruce, 86, said that he was not retiring and would continue to present the Strictly Christmas Special as well as other spin-offs from the series.
The showbusiness veteran, who was knighted in 2011, missed a number of shows last series due to illness.
He quit the results show in 2010 and was replaced by Claudia Winkleman, who may be given a more prominent role when the series returns this Autumn.
Sir Bruce said: “After 10 wonderful years and 11 series, I believe it is now the right time to step down from the rigours of presenting the Strictly live shows.
“I am very proud of what the show has achieved and confident it will entertain the nation for many years to come. I am also delighted that by presenting the Christmas and Children in Need shows I will continue to have a strong association with Strictly.
“In addition, I am looking forward to the specials planned with the BBC as well as some live theatre shows, so before anyone asks... I am not retiring quite yet!”
Strictly Come Dancing past winners
Strictly Come Dancing past winners
1/12 Caroline Flack
Caroline Flack triumphed ahead of Frankie Bridge, Mark Wright and Simon Webbe to lift the 2014 Glitter Ball trophy with Pasha Kovalev.
2/12 Abbey Clancey
Model Abbey Clancy won the 2013 series with her dance partner Aljaz Skorjanec.
3/12 Louis Smith
Last year's winner was Olympic gymnastics bronze medallist Louis Smith, who took part fresh from the glory of the London games. He won Strictly with Flavia Cacace after Girls Aloud's Kimberley Walsh, Denise Van Outen and Danni Harmer challenged him in the final.
4/12 Harry Judd
McFly drummer Harry Judd and his partner Aliona Vilani took the trophy in 2011 after seeing off competition from Jason Donavan. He had previously won a Children in Need special of Strictly, in which he beat The Saturdays' Rochelle Wiseman to the title.
5/12 Kara Tointon
EastEnders star Kara Tointon was the second actress to win Strictly in 2010, partnered with debut professional Artem Chigvintsev. She has appeared in Pygmalion in the West End with Rupert Everett.
6/12 Chris Hollins
News presenter and sportsman Chris Hollins won in 2009 with Ola Jordan to beat actor Ricky Whittle to the crown. He managed to avoid the dance-off for the entirety of his run. He presented the BBC Breakfast sports news while appearing on Strictly.
7/12 Tom Chambers
Holby City actor Tom Chambers won in 2008 with Camilla Dallerup, who was competing in her last series of the show. Model Lisa Snowdon and S Club star Rachel Stevens lost out in the final. He currently stars in the West End.
8/12 Alesha Dixon
Singer and former Strictly judge Alesha Dixon was crowned champion of the 5th series in 2007. She won with Matthew Cutler after a close final with Matt Di Angelo. She holds the record for the highest average score in Strictly history with 36.5, despite never achieving a perfect 40 points. She joined the judging panel from 2009 to 2011 and is now on Britain's Got Talent.
9/12 Mark Ramprakash
Proving that cricketers can flourish on Strictly, Mark Ramprakash followed Darren Gough's footsteps to win Strictly in 2006 with dance partner Karen Hardy. Rugby player Matt Dawson lost out to him in the final.
10/12 Darren Gough
Cricketer Darren Gough won the third series with Lilia Kopylova, defeating athlete Colin Jackson and presenter Zoe Ball. Gough never finished top of the judges' leaderboard but was still crowned champion by the public! He now co-presents a talkSPORT radio show.
11/12 Jill Halfpenny
EastEnders actress Jill Halfpenny won the second 2004 series with Darren Bennett after beating off competition from comedian Julian Clary and Olympian Denise Lewis. She still holds the highest score for a Jive in Strictly history, scoring the full 40 points from the judges. She now has a West End theatre career.
12/12 Natasha Kaplinsky
Newsreader Natasha Kaplinsky was the first winner to lift the glitterball trophy with her dance partner Brendan Cole in 2004, beating EastEnders actor Christopher Parker in the final.
No Strictly replacement was named for Sir Bruce. His departure gives the BBC an opportunity to refresh the show as it faces a renewed ratings challenge from The X Factor, which has restored Simon Cowell and Cheryl Cole to its judging line-up.
Candidates to take over the Strictly role could include Graham Norton, Rufus Hound, Vernon Kay, husband of co-host Tess Daly, or even former Come Dancing host Sir Terry Wogan if the BBC wishes to pair Daly with another old-hand.
Mark Linsey, controller of entertainment commissioning, said: “One of the joys of my job is working with Sir Bruce Forsyth and long may that continue.
“He is the all-time master and commander when it comes to Great British entertainers and Strictly owes him such a great deal. This is not a farewell, but you can’t blame him for wanting to take things a little bit easier.”
Charlotte Moore, controller of BBC One, said: “Sir Bruce Forsyth is one of the great showbiz legends of our time and Strictly’s success is due in vast amounts to him. I am so pleased he will continue to be part of the Strictly family and promise viewers that we haven't seen the last of him on BBC One.”
The announcement that Sir Bruce is stepping down comes a week after he gave a long and occasionally rambling acceptance speech at the Broadcasting Press Guild awards in front of senior BBC executives.Reuse content