Belfast Telegraph

Forsyth: Strictly split was tough

Sir Bruce Forsyth has revealed that telling Tess Daly about his Strictly Come Dancing exit was like breaking up with a girlfriend.

The TV host, who is quitting from the "rigours" of fronting the live shows of the BBC dancing programme after 10 years and 11 series, admitted giving his co-presenter the news was "like a boyfriend breaking up with his girl".

In an interview with BBC News, the 86-year-old added: "She was in tears and started me off a bit."

Bruce said making the decision to step down was emotional.

"It's sad, I've loved doing it. I've always said that, at the end of last series I was getting that feeling, 'Is this the time?'," he revealed.

"I've just been on my three-month break in the Caribbean, I've been thinking about it all the time," he continued, adding: "[Live television] takes its toll when you've been doing it for many years, it's a pressure thing."

Bruce will continue to host the Strictly Christmas specials, Children In Need episode and other one-offs. He also insisted he is not retiring.

"I'm not retiring," he said. "That's the last thing in the world I want to do. This isn't Brucie walking into the sunset."

Tess led the goodbye messages to Bruce after he announced his departure on April 4.

She said: "It's been an absolute pleasure and a privilege working alongside Bruce for the last decade. He's a TV legend, a total gentleman and someone my family and I are honoured to call a true friend.

"We've spoken about it, and he knows how much I love him and how much he'll be missed - but he's not going to escape me that easily, as we'll be keeping him dancing when we're reunited for the Children in Need and Christmas specials."

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