Strictly Come Dancing’s new star Ed Balls will face a testing time when he is one of the contestants in the series which starts next week. But he is unlikely to face anything as hair-raising as the time he thought he was going to die on a transatlantic flight with former Prime Minister Gordon Brown.
Balls reveals in his upcoming biography that the two of them were on a flight on Concorde in 2002 to Washington when the plane nearly fell out of the sky.
Ed writes in his new book, called Speaking Out: “Gordon said ‘well, here we are’ and I said: ‘Yep, maybe this is it’.”
When the plane got to 24,000ft Gordon turned to Balls and said: ‘What do you think? Should we finish my speech?”, recounts Balls.
Fortunately the plane started falling, disaster was averted, and the speech was finished.
Balls’ book is serialised in The Times today, and he told the paper that his close political ally Brown was “a very nice person to almost die with”.
The former MP and Cabinet Minister faces an altogether different challenge when Strictly starts on BBC1, however, and he admits that his dancing still needs a little work.
“I can do the hi-ho silver lining,” he reveals hopefully today.
We’re not sure that’s even a dance but good luck anyway, Ed….
Strictly Come Dancing has been confirmed for 6.50pm on Saturday 3rd of September 2016 when this year’s celebrity cast will be paired up with their professional partner.
Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman will be on hosting duties with the judging panel of Darcey Bussell, Bruno Tonioli, Craig Revel Horwood and – in his final year – Len Goodman back in place.
Anastacia, Daisy Lowe, Will Young, Louise Redknapp and Danny Mac are among the celebrities taking part. See the full list here.