Katie Piper predicts who will replace Darcey Bussell on Strictly Come Dancing

11 April 2019, 08:51 | Updated: 11 April 2019, 11:01

Katie at the Heart studio this morning
Katie at the Heart studio this morning. Picture: Heart

Katie Piper appeared on Heart Breakfast with Jamie Theakston and Lucy Horobin this morning

It was announced yesterday that Strictly Come Dancing judge Darcey Bussell will be stepping down from the show after six years.

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She revealed in a statement that she would be leaving to “focus on other commitments in dance”.

Darcy Bussell will not return to Strictly this year
Darcy Bussell will not return to Strictly this year. Picture: PA

The statement read: “It has been a complete privilege for me to be part of Strictly, working with such a talented team.

"I have enjoyed every minute of my time and will miss everyone from my fellow judges, the presenters, the dancers, the musicians, the entire back stage team, and especially the viewers of the show, who have been so supportive.

"I am not leaving because of any upset or disagreement at all, I am just stepping away to give more focus to my many other commitments in dance, after seven truly wonderful years that I can't imagine having gone any better."

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Strictly contestant Katie Piper appeared on Heart Breakfast this morning, and chatted to Jamie Theakston and Lucy Horobin about the news.

She said: "It's sad. I was surprised, and I felt really glad that I got to dance in front of her and meet her, cos she's a legend, isn't she?"

Jamie then asked: "As a judge, was she quite helpful?

Katie responded: "She was polite. and tactful.

Katie at the Heart studio this morning
Katie in the Heart studio this morning. Picture: Heart

"She was quite a good mentor because she would take time off camera to give you advice."

And when asked who she thought might replace Darcey, Katie predicted Oti Mabuse.

She said: "I think Oti would be brilliant because she's brilliant on The Greatest Dancer. I like watching her."

Darcey joined the Strictly Come Dancing team in 2012, joining Bruno Tonioli, Craig Revel Horwood, Len Goodman, and later Shirley Ballas on the judging panel.

Katie thinks The Greatest Dancer's Oti Mabuse should replace Darcy
Katie thinks The Greatest Dancer's Oti Mabuse should replace Darcy. Picture: Getty

Director of BBC Content Charlotte Moore said of the announcement: “It has been an absolute honour to have Darcey, a national treasure and British dance icon, bring her passion for dance and her graceful presence to the Strictly Come Dancing judging panel for seven consecutive years.

"She will be thoroughly missed by us all and will of course remain part of the Strictly family in the future."