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Strictly Come Dancing 2019: First three celebrity contestants confirmed on The One Show

David James, Emma Barton and Chris Ramsey are all taking part!

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The launch of this year’s Strictly Come Dancing is just around the corner now and, as ever, rumours about which celebrities will be taking part are gathering pace.

Yesterday, it was teased that The One Show would confirm the three first names of contestants on this evening’s show.

It appeared that presenter Iain Lee had let that secret slip on Good Morning Britain earlier today, claiming that Anneka Rice, Jamie Laing and Sam Allerdyce’s involvement would be announced.

However, the BBC threw a curve ball tonight by revealing the names of three other stars: ex-footballer David James; EastEnders star Emma Barton; stand-up comedian Chris Ramsey.

Easties star Emma will be pulling on her dancing shoes (Credit: Splash)

Read more: Strictly Come Dancing 2019: Theresa May taking part?

This exciting news follows confirmation earlier this week of a new female dancer joining the cast of professionals.

On Tuesday (July 30), the BBC announced world-class Latin dancer Nancy Xu will be part of the new series.

Nancy, 28, said in a statement: “I’m thrilled and excited! I cannot wait to start this new journey with all these amazing people and share the magic together.”

She will fit right in with her peers as she has an impressive dance background, having reached the final on China’s So You Think You Can Dance and performed in hit Broadway and West End show Burn The Floor.

Strictly has now confirmed the names of all the pros taking part in this year’s series.

The male dancers will be: AJ Pritchard, Aljaž Škorjanec, Anton du Beke, Giovanni Pernice, Gorka Marquez, Graziano Di Prima, Johannes Radebe, Kevin Clifton and Neil Jones.

The female pros will be: Amy Dowden, Dianne Buswell, Janette Manrara, Karen Hauer, Katya Jones, Nadiya Bychkova, Luba Mushtuk and Oti Mabuse.

Strictly pros
Strictly has now confirmed all the pros for 2019 (Credit: Brett D. Cove /

In April, Strictly bosses scrambled to replace judge Darcey Bussell after the star announced plans to quit.

The long-time judge revealing she was leaving after seven years on the show, telling fans in a statement that it had been “a complete privilege” to work with “such a talented team”.

She said at the time: “I have enjoyed every minute of my time and will miss everyone, from my fellow judges and presenters to the dancers and musicians, and the entire backstage team, and especially the viewers of the show who have been so supportive.”

Darcey went on to confirm that she was leaving to focus on her other dance commitments and not because of “upset or disagreement”.

Dame Darcey Bussell
Darcey quit after seven years on the show (Credit: Brett D. Cove /

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Professional dancer Anton du Beke was among the favourites to replace her on the panel, but execs eventually went with Motsi Mabuse, sister of professional dancer Oti Mabuse.

A start date for the new series is yet to be confirmed, but based on previous years it will likely get underway in September.

In 2018, Strictly kicked off on Saturday, September 8. That was the first Saturday of the month, which means this year’s most likely start date is Saturday, September 7.

What do you think of Strictly’s celeb line-up so far? Leave us a comment on our Facebook page @EntertainmentDailyFix and let us know.