Tess Daly

Strictly Come Dancing: Tess Daly reveals real first name ahead of live show

Strictly gets underway properly this weekend

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Strictly host Tess Daly has shocked fans by revealing that she isn’t using her real name.

Tess, 51, says that her mother is the only person who now uses the name she was given at birth.

Tess Daly Strictly Credit: BBC
Tess Daly has revealed she has a real first name (Credit: BBC)

What is the real name of Strictly star Tess Daly?

Speaking to the Daily Mail, Tess revealed that she used to be called Helen but changed her name in her teens.

After signing with a modelling agency when she was 17, Tess discovered there was another model on the books with the name Helen Davies.

Read more: Strictly Come Dancing reveals routines for first live show

It was then that she was told to change it to avoid confusion.

But despite the change, she refuses to change it officially because it would be “disrespectful” to her parents.

Tess Daly smiles as she reveals her real first name
Tess had to change her name because of a clash at a modelling agency (Credit: Tony Clark / SplashNews.com)

What did Tess say about the name change?

“My agent was obsessed with [the actress] Nastassja Kinski at the time, who was in the film Tess, and thought I looked like her,” she said.

“So Tess it was. I was gullible and impressionable.

“Mind you, two weeks later I was in Japan, then travelled the world. Paris, Milan, New York.”

As her modelling career took off, Tess married TV star Vernon Kay in 2003 under her real name.

What did Tess say ahead of Saturday’s show?

Tess’s revelation comes as the Strictly celebs prepare for their first dances in tonight’s show (Saturday, October 24).

Last week, Tess took to Instagram to share excitement at seeing them perform.

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She told fans that she was “so excited” and that after having watched rehearsals, she said that they were “amazing”.

“I mean they are honestly so good,” she said.

“I laughed and I cried watching them, I went through every emotion because it was so moving and brilliant. You’re gonna love it.”

Strictly continues on BBC One tonight (Saturday, October 24) at 7.25pm

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