Yet again this dumpy woman who once got banned from Zumba was overlooked for Strictly – I can’t imagine why

As the contestants’ names are announced, those of us not on the list rue another year of lost opportunities and wobbly thighs, says Jenny Eclair

Monday 16 August 2021 21:30
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<p>Starter for 10: The ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ judges  </p>

Starter for 10: The ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ judges

It may still be August, but there’s that whiff of autumn in the air: Love Island has just days to go (my money’s on Millie), the supermarkets are full of back-to-school uniforms and they’ve just announced the cast list for Strictly Come Dancing 2021. By the time someone lifts that glitter ball, Christmas will be upon us and we can say goodbye to a very peculiar year.

Fifteen new celebrities have signed up for the queen of the BBC TV schedules and who can blame them? Strictly is the creme de la creme of reality shows. It’s the one everyone really wants to take part in, because not only will you lose the flab and get fit, but it’s the biggest career booster on the telly circuit. Case in point: Ann Widdecombe. Slathered in fake tan, frocked up in sequins and teamed with that nice Anton Du Beke, suddenly the country forgot her political leanings and for the duration of her time on the show she became funny, loveable, cuddly aunty Ann Widdecombe, rather than Ann Widdecombe, the woman who voted for female prisoners to give birth in handcuffs.

Every year, as the contestants’ names are drip fed daily to the media, those of us not on the list rue another year of lost opportunities and wobbly thighs. Why Gordon Ramsay’s daughter and not me?

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