Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

In their own words: Strictly celebrities on what Blackpool means to them

Charles Venn and Faye Tozer at the launch of Strictly Come Dancing 2018 held at The Broadcasting House, London.
Charles Venn and Faye Tozer at the launch of Strictly Come Dancing 2018 held at The Broadcasting House, London.

This Saturday the eight remaining stars of Strictly Come Dancing will descend on the famous Blackpool Tower Ballroom for a special episode of the BBC One show.

Trooped by a team of backing dancers, each couple will take to the historic venue’s floor for both their own routines as well as a number of group dances.

Prior to this weekend’s show, the celebrity dancers told the Press Association what getting to Blackpool means to them.

Faye Tozer

“[Blackpool] is bigger and better, there’s more thrown at it, costumes are bigger, there’s more dancers. It’s a big thing, a big affair.

“Mum and dad are going to come, and obviously my husband who has been there every single week. For mum and dad it’s a really big thing. They are the people who put me on the stage to start off with.

“When you are in a pop group you are part of a package. This is something I have been doing on my own. It’s kind of like when mum and dad saw me do my first musical on my own. It’s a different sort of pride because it’s their little girl doing it.”

Joe Sugg

“When I was growing up I loved arcades and I’ve heard it’s a big seaside town and I’ve seen so many photographs of those little two pence slot machines.

“That’s my favourite thing to do so if I get any spare time when I’m up there that’s where I’m going to be heading. I’m going to win about five pounds in two pence coins. Two carrier bags full.”

Graeme Swann

“I love it. I love everything about the seaside. It’s just brilliant. I was only four years old [when I first went to Blackpool]. When we arrived the lights turned on and I got really miserable because, you know English seaside towns, they have these spinning things that are fluorescent.

“Mum and dad wouldn’t let me get on them because they were a pound and I suppose in 1985 that was a lot of money. I wasn’t allowed on so I sulked all the way through.”

Ashley Roberts

“Doing Strictly means knowing the history of Latin and ballroom, so to know now that Blackpool has so much history, that it had some many different competitions, and the energy and sweat that’s gone into the ballroom, I think it’s going to be quite magical.”

Kate Silverton

“It’s like walking into a church or anywhere that is steeped in history. There is something very soulful about buildings that have so much history.

“So to be in a ballroom dancing competition and to go to what is considered to be the home of ballroom dancing is obviously very special indeed.”

Lauren Steadman

“AJ won all of his titles at Blackpool. If someone was going to come and do a triathlon and they were going to do it in the place that I went to the Olympics, that’s a special feeling.

“I want to step on to the floor which he won those on. For me, being an athlete, that’s how I think about it.

“It will be amazing for me to dance there. He’s told me about it, that it’s our country’s most prestigious place for ballroom and Latin. To be able to dance somewhere with that title is amazing.”

Charles Venn

“To go to Blackpool and perform in an arena that is deemed a coliseum, that is deemed one of the Meccas of ballroom, where some of the greatest dancers, practitioners, have performed, it means everything.

“I want to go further, I’ve got that urge and Blackpool is the beginning of that.”

Stacey Dooley

“I’ve done a film for Children In Need about youth homelessness and one of main lads is living on the streets of Blackpool. It would be good to get back there.

“There was an amazing charity that were helping us. I could sort of poke my head round and show Kevin off to them for half an hour.”

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]