Belfast Telegraph

Strictly Come Dancing line-up officially announced

Lesley Joseph, EastEnders star Tameka Empson and long jumper Greg Rutherford are the final three celebrities confirmed for Strictly Come Dancing 2016.

Birds of a Feather's Lesley Joseph is among the final stars confirmed to be competing on this year's Strictly Come Dancing.

The 70-year-old actress is officially the oldest female contestant in the programme's history, and will be competing for the Glitterball trophy when the BBC series returns to screens on 3 September (16).

Asked how she is feeling about showing off her fancy footwork on the show, Lesley said she is "scared and excited and apprehensive and thrilled".

"Strictly is an iconic show and I have always loved the glamour and the dedication and the entertainment, and this year it suddenly seemed right to take part," she added.

The official line-up for the programme was revealed on Monday (22Aug16), with Lesley, Olympic medal-winning long jumper Greg Rutherford and EastEnders star Tameka Empson the final three names announced.

Greg has only just returned from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, after winning bronze in the Olympics there, and is keen to add the Glitterball to his trophy cabinet.

"This is definitely a long jump from my day job, for sure," Greg joked. "Taking to the Strictly ballroom is like nothing I have ever done before."

Meanwhile, Tameka, who plays Kim Fox in the BBC soap, described the Strictly experience as "a dream", adding she has "been waiting for years to take part in Strictly".

The other celebrities competing on this year's series are singers Anastacia, Louise Redknapp and Will Young, presenters Laura Whitmore, Ore Oduba and Naga Munchetty, politician Ed Balls, model Daisy Lowe, radio DJ Melvin Odoom, actor Danny Mac, gymnast Claudia Fragapane and "Judge" Robert Rinder.

The programme will begin with Strictly Come Dancing - The Launch Show next month, when the celebrities find out which professional dancer they have been paired with.

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