Who is Pamela Stephenson? Strictly Come Dancing Christmas special contestant guide

Six years after coming third in the Strictly final, Stephenson will be back on the dance floor – this time with Pasha Kovalev

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Pamela Stephenson became by far the oldest contestant ever to make it to the final when, at the age of 61, she came third in the competition in series eight. Now 67, she will return to the dance floor to see whether she can become the oldest ever winner of the Strictly Come Dancing Christmas special.

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Who was her original Strictly partner?

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Stephenson’s professional partner was James Jordan, before he quit the show and became its fiercest Twitter critic.

He later admitted on Loose Women that he was not thrilled to be paired with a 61-year-old grandmother, but once the initial shock had worn off he realised “this woman was amazing”.

Is she a contender?

In 2010, the comedian and psychologist (who is married to Billy Connolly) put in solid performances all the way through. Her high point was a Quickstep to Fred Astaire’s Steppin’ Out With My Baby, which earned a perfect score of 40 – and it wasn’t her only top scoring dance, either.

Stephenson was never in the dance-off, but lost out in the final to Matt Baker and Kara Tointon who beat her into third place.

What has she been doing since Strictly?

Never one to sit still, Stephenson has continued her work as a TV presenter, writer and psychologist. She writes an advice column for the Guardian about sexual problems, has put together a Brazilian dane company which performed at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and made a programme about being a backpacker in Papua New Guinea.

Who will Pamela Stephenson be dancing with in the Christmas special?

Stephenson and her professional partner Pasha Kovalev will be performing the Cha-Cha-Cha to a Love Actually song.

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This year’s Christmas special will air on Christmas Day at 6.45pm on BBC1