Forget last year’s “heartland BBC”, the magic word for 2016’s Strictly line-up is “eclectic”

Strictly’s class of 2016 could be an exciting one as we’re told to expect a group of celebrities so varied only the ballroom-based show could make it work...

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Hold onto your glittery hats because we’re told the key word to describe this year’s crop of Strictly Come Dancing celebrities is… “eclectic”.

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Yep, it seems we should forget last year’s tone of “heartland BBC” – which saw the likes of BBC Breakfast weather reporter Carol Kirkwood and BBC Radio 2’s Jeremy Vine take to the floor – with an insider telling us this mix sums up what makes SCD special.

“Strictly Come Dancing is the only show that could bring this particular group of people together and that’s what makes the show so unique.”

Just how varied and wide-ranging they’ll go remains to be seen. Given this is Strictly, and this is the BBC, we should probably expect to be politely surprised rather than picking our jaws up from the floor. But who doesn’t like a curveball entrant or two?

The series will of course continue to offer someone for everyone to get behind. So we’re still expecting a soap star or two, a sportsperson and a popular presenter to sign up. As ever the line-up isn’t being discussed by the Beeb, but that hasn’t stopped us all speculating. Doctors-cum-presenters Xand and Chris Van Tulleken and actor Jonny Labey, who recently left EastEnders, are among the rumours. As is This Morning’s Ruth Langsford and Birds of a Feather star Lesley Joseph.

As per last year, RadioTimes.com understands that one name will be confirmed per day across various outlets. Usually this process starts in August.

The 2015 series saw the celebrities adopt Disney codenames for the necessary secret taxi/hotel/rehearsal needs, so we’re waiting to hear what they’ve come up with this year. Our suggestion of a Star Wars-themed group – ‘taxi for Darth Vader!’ – has apparently not been used. More’s the pity. 

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Strictly Come Dancing returns to BBC1 later this year