Alexandra Burke “trying to stay positive” through first Christmas without her mum

Such a tough time

Strictly Come Dancing finalist Alexandra Burke has said she is “trying to stay positive for her loved ones” as she shared a Christmas message on Twitter.

The 29-year-old singer and former X Factor winner lost her mother, singer Melissa Bell, in August this year shortly after she had signed up to compete on Strictly.

She tweeted: “A very merry Christmas to you all. Sending you all so much love on this day. For those who aren’t here with us – we must try our best to smile for them. Think of all the good times shared. Trying my best to stay positive for my loved ones. Have a great day guys. All my love – AB X.”

Strictly professionals Janette Manrara and Aljaz Skorjanec are celebrating their first Christmas as a married couple.

Manrara departed Strictly this year in a shock exit alongside JLS singer Aston Merrygold, who had been the bookies’ early favourite to win.

Former Hollyoaks star Gemma Atkinson and Skorjanec partnered together and made the 2017 finale.

Manrara tweeted: “Merry Christmas from the Skorjanec’s! Our 1st as #MrMrs & loving every moment! We hope your day is filled w/ many blessings but most of all #love! Thank you for supporting us in all that we do! And HUGE hugs & kisses to my beautiful family in Miami! We love you!”.

This year’s winner, Scottish actor Joe McFadden, also posted a touching message.

He tweeted: “A very merry Christmas to everyone! Let’s count our blessings and be patient with friends and loved ones. Much love. X”.

Strictly stalwart Anton Du Beke, who danced with This Morning presenter Ruth Langsford this year, was also full of good wishes as he posted a short video message.

“Merry Christmas! I hope you are all having a lovely day spending time with loved ones, and that you have ‘It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year’ on repeat,” he tweeted alongside his Christmas message video clip.

Strictly judge Bruno Tonioli posted a photograph of himself in a sheer black top, alongside fellow judge Darcey Bussell on Instagram.

His message said: “HAPPY CHRISTMAS to everyone… I hope you have a fabulous day surrounded by love, family and friendships xx”.

The Strictly Christmas Special, which airs on Christmas Day, will see six former celebrity contestants return to the show in the hope of lifting the Silver Star trophy.

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