Strictly Come Dancing judge Anton Du Beke has revealed that he was stabbed by his father in his leg and stomach on Boxing Day during his childhood.


The ballroom dancer made the admission while appearing on Kate Garraway’s Life Stories, airing tonight (Wednesday 2nd August) at 9pm on ITV, detailing that the attack happened at his former family home in Kent, and left him in hospital for three days.

"I got stabbed in the leg and in the stomach because of a fight on Boxing Day, and it was an idiotic situation," Du Beke told Good Morning Britain presenter Kate Garraway.

"I remember walking out of the house to walk up to the hospital holding my leg and a police car drove past and I waved them down and I said: 'He's in there with a knife.'"

He continued: "Anyway, they carted him off and I ended up in hospital for three or four days. My only concern was getting back into the studio and dancing and the embarrassment of it."

Anton Du Beke and Kate Garraway in Kate Garraway's Life Stories, sitting on chairs and looking into camera
Anton Du Beke and Kate Garraway in Kate Garraway's Life Stories. Multistory TV/ITV

Following the incident, Du Beke said he was so embarrassed by what happened that he told people he had a hamstring injury. He added that the revelations were bound to shock friends and family as it was the first time he's spoken about the stabbing publicly.

Du Beke explained that his father, who struggled with alcoholism, was cleared in court over the attack.

The star, born to a Spanish mother and Hungarian father, grew up on a council estate in Sevenoaks, Kent.

His love for dancing began after he watched his sister perform at a local studio. While his mother was encouraging of his pastime, his father derided it. Du Beke said that his father's volatile behaviour was impacted by his addiction to alcohol.

“The alcoholism and the violence … [it was] towards me, because I was a boy, a young man I suppose," he continued.

"You've got an alcoholic father and a situation where, if you’re in the house, [he’s] drinking, then you end up with the fights and stuff.

"You'd move room to get away from all of it and then he follows you in, and the next thing you know the violence starts. And then it came to a head one evening, I ended up in hospital for three days."

Du Beke, who joined Strictly from its inception in 2004, is the longest-serving professional dancer on the ballroom competition.

He took over as judge from Bruno Tonioli in 2021, and will be returning to the panel when the show returns to BBC One in the autumn.

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Speaking of her interview with the 57-year-old, Garraway said: "Anton Du Beke is a character that’s larger than life but also, as I already knew from my time with dancing on Strictly, very private.

"He has a philosophy about his relationship with his fans that he is there to bring joy into their lives and doesn’t want to share any of his own troubles.

"But with me he does, and it showed a huge leap of trust on his part, because many of the things we talked about he hadn’t even really talked about even with his close family, and I felt so honoured to be able to help him to share it."

The broadcaster will also be joined by Ruby Wax on her Life Stories, which continues next Wednesday at 9pm on ITV.

Strictly Come Dancing will return to BBC One and BBC iPlayer this Autumn.

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