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Strictly Come Dancing: First photo of contestants revealed

The new series will begin this autumn

This year’s Strictly Come Dancing contestants are already hitting rehearsals ahead of the new series.

Former Coronation Street actress Catherine Tyldesley, who is taking part, shared a snap to Instagram showing the 12 contestants taking to the dance floor this autumn.

In the photo, the group are seen beaming for the camera in a hall as they took a break from rehearsals.

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My fabulous new @bbcstrictly family ❤️❤️❤️❤️

A post shared by Catherine Tyldesley (@auntiecath17) on

Read more: Strictly Come Dancing: Emma Barton once ruled herself out for being ‘too experienced’

Catherine captioned the post: “My fabulous new @bbcstrictly family.”

The star will go head-to-head with Viscountess Emma Weymouth, Anneka Rice, Saffron Barker, Alex Scott, Michelle Visage, David James, Chris Ramsey, Dev Griffin, James Cracknell and Emma Barton.

Joining them will be Will Bayley, Jamie Laing, Mike Bushell and Karim Zeroual.

Fans were quick to express their excitement for the new series.

One person said: “Looks such fun!!” while another wrote: “I’m so excited, you’re going do be amazing.”

A third added: “Can’t wait, hope you all do well good luck all the way.”

Catherine was announced as a contestant during an appearance on This Morning.

She said on the show: “I’m so excited. My husband [knew], he’s thrilled to bits. I told my best friend and he started laughing. The history is I can’t really dance.

“I can’t dance. I love to dance on a night out if I’ve had a few drinks, but that is it. I am literally terrified. I’m going to struggle to remember things [like the choreography].

“I always thought I need to do this. It’s going to be like therapy. It’s going to be a real challenge for me.”

EastEnders‘ Emma, former England footballer David, and comedian Chris were the first stars announced for this year’s series.

Emma said: “As possibly one of the biggest Strictly fans on the planet, I still can’t believe this is happening.

“I’m very much a dance around your handbag kinda girl, but now I’ve been given this wonderful opportunity to learn all the different styles of dancing from the very best in the business.

“So, I’m whipping off Honey’s ‘Minute Mart’ tabard and diving right in to all the glitter and sparkle. From Albert Square to the Strictly dance floor – I just can’t wait!”

David also said: “I’m really excited to be on Strictly this year. Not just competing against this year’s stars, but being compared to previous sport stars from previous Strictly seasons.

“I have some big shoes to fill.”

Chris added: “I’m both excited and absolutely terrified to be doing the show. You will not find me on the dance floor at parties, you will find me at the buffet table. All night.

Read more: Strictly Come Dancing: Jamie Laing says his dance background won’t help him

“At my wedding I danced with my wife; that one song took about six months practice, and I definitely stood on her feet a couple of times.

“So I’m looking forward to the possibility of making a fool of myself in front of millions of people… there better be a buffet after the live shows.”

Are you excited for this year’s series of Strictly? Head to our Facebook page @EntertainmentDailyFixand let us know what you think.