Belfast Telegraph

Craig Revel Horwood has no ambition to be Strictly head judge

Craig Revel Horwood has joked he doesn't want to be the top judge as the role doesn't pay any more.

Craig Revel Horwood didn’t want to step into Len Goodman’s head judge shoes on Strictly Come Dancing.

Len announced he was quitting the popular BBC ballroom show last year (16), after serving as the top judge since the series began in 2004. He bowed out on Christmas Day, with English ballroom dancer Shirley Ballas taking over his seat on the expert panel.

She joins long-serving judges Craig and Bruno Tonioli, as well as Darcey Bussell, who joined as a permanent judge in 2012.

"It would have been wrong for me because I would have had to become a smiley mediator which isn’t in my nature,” Craig laughed to Radio Times. “Besides, you don’t get any more money. Anyway, it’s best that it’s someone viewers have no pre-conceived ideas about, unlike Anton (du Beke) or Brendan (Cole).

“I think (Shirley) will be great. She has more knowledge than any of the other judges - including me, although telly requires more than that. Time will tell.”

The 15th series of Strictly kicks off later this year (17), with the full line-up expected to be announced in August. Loose Women star Ruth Langsford has reportedly already been signed up.

Talking about the fix claims that dog every season of Strictly, Craig explains that he would love BBC bosses to make the voting figures public knowledge to silence the haters.

"I only wish they’d make the figures from the phone vote public, to stop any talk of the show being fixed," he sighed. "But if one celeb gets 13 million votes and another gets two votes, it might not go down well.”

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