Strictly Come Dancing ‘will allow same-sex couples' in 2020 show shake-up

31 August 2019, 12:17 | Updated: 31 August 2019, 17:31

Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman
Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman present the popular BBC 1 dance show. Picture: Getty

By Beci Wood

Strictly Come Dancing is getting a new format - allowing same-sex couples to compete from next year.

The BBC has finally relaxed its policy after years of campaigning from stars including judge Craig Revel Horwood and viewers of the show.

An insider told The Daily Mirror that bosses had a change of heart after seeing other nations taking on the idea.

"Bosses have said while there aren't any same sex pairings in this series, they'd definitely be open to it, given the right combination of celebs and dancers", said the source.

"The show's always been inclusive and reflects modern Britain.”

READ MORE: When does Strictly Come Dancing start?

Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton
Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton were the winners of Strictly Come Dancing in 2018. Picture: BBC

The popular dancing show received criticism at the Edinburgh TV Festival this month so failing move with the times like Israel and Australia.

In Australia, drag artist Courteney Act - played by Shane Janek - danced with a professional male and got to the final and won an army of fans.

Last year TV doctor Ranj Singh admitted he would loved to have the option 'to dance with a same-sex partner.'

A selection of the Strictly Come Dancing 2019 line-up
A selection of the Strictly Come Dancing 2019 line-up. Picture: Getty

The source continued: "Having previously thought it was unnecessary, it has dawned on people at the BBC that the original British show looks a bit backwards in not having embraced the notion of a same-sex couple.

“It could well be that we follow the Aussie model and go for a charismatic drag act, because Courtney Act proved hugely popular with traditionally conservative Australian viewers.

Courtney Act
Courtney Act was a hit was TV viewers. Picture: Getty

Ex-footballer David James, YouTube star Saffron Baker, EastEnders star Emma Barton, Coronation Street actress Catherine Tyldesley, football unit Alex Scott BME,Made In Chelsea star Jamie Laing, rower James Cracknell, TV presenter Anneka Rice and RuPaul star Michelle Visage are among this year's contestants.

The show starts next week.

We can't wait!