Who is Emmerdale's Kelvin Fletcher? The actor replacing Jamie Laing on Strictly Come Dancing 2019

9 September 2019, 11:55 | Updated: 9 September 2019, 11:59

Kelvin Fletcher has replaced Jamie Laing on Strictly
Kelvin Fletcher has replaced Jamie Laing on Strictly. Picture: Instagram
Naomi Bartram

By Naomi Bartram

Former Emmerdale star Kelvin Fletcher has been unveiled as Jamie Laing’s replacement on this year’s Strictly.

It hasn't even officially started yet and Strictly Come Dancing is already at the centre of some major drama after Made In Chelsea star Jamie Laing was forced to quit due to injury.

But after Emmerdale actor Kelvin Fletcher was announced as his replacement - here's everything you need to know about the actor...

Who is Emmerdale's Kelvin Fletcher?

Kelvin is a 35-year-old actor from Oldham in Greater Manchester best known for playing Andy Sugden in Emmerdale.

He began acting lessons at the age of just six and had a string of small parts in shows such as Heartbeat, Cracker and Coronation Street when he was younger.

But the star became a well-known face when he joined ITV soap Emmerdale all the way back in 1996 where he played Andy for 20 years before quitting in 2016.

His character was originally only meant to be in the soap for three episodes but went on to become one of the show’s most popular characters.

Read More: Emmerdale star Kelvin Fletcher has replaced injured Jamie Laing on Strictly Come Dancing

One of his most poignant storylines followed a dramatic fire at the Sugden’s family barn leading to the accidental death of his adopted mum Sarah.

During his time on the soap he won a British Soap Award in 1999 for Best Dramatic Performance, as well as being nominated for Best Actor in the same year.

His character left the village in 2016 when he escaped from prison after being framed for attempted murder.

Since quitting the Dales, Kelvin has focused on his career as a professional racing driver for the British GT Championships.

View this post on Instagram

Fix up look sharp.

A post shared by Kelvin Fletcher (@kelvin_fletcher) on

Is Kelvin married?

Kelvin married his long-term girlfriend Liz Marland in 2015, and the couple now have two adorable children, daughter Marnie and son Milo.

Read More: Strictly Come Dancing's Giovanni 'attacked and blinded' in noxious substance assault by masked robbers

The pair often share sweet photos on their family on social media.

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The best thing in my life ❤️

A post shared by Kelvin Fletcher (@kelvin_fletcher) on

Who is Kelvin’s Strictly partner?

Kelvin will be dancing with fan favourite Oti Mabuse, who was originally meant to be with Jamie.

They’re one of 15 celebrity couples taking part this year, with the official pairings being revealed during Saturday night’s glitzy launch show.

What has Kelvin said about joining Strictly?

After being announced as Jamie’s replacement, Kelvin released an official statement, admitting he’s over the moon to have joined the line-up.

He said: ““Is this really happening?! It’s been the most surreal week of my life! I’m a massive fan of Strictly so it’s incredible.”

Referencing former Strictly celeb Jamie, he added: “I’m so happy that I can be a part of it. But at the same time it’s quite bittersweet! I’m coming in on the back of Jamie’s injury – I keep thinking about him!

“I can’t imagine going through all this excitement and then having to pull out. My thoughts are with him – he seems like a fantastic guy and I hope he’s doing OK.”

Why did Jamie Laing quit?

Last week it was revealed that MIC star Jamie had to pull out of the BBC show due to a foot injury.

At the end of the launch show on Saturday he said that he has been ordered to rest his foot for eight weeks which means he won’t be able to take part.

“I just wanted to give everyone a quick update on my foot,” he explained.

“Now because of the injury it means I’m going to be in a boot for eight weeks recovering which means I won’t be a part of the show.

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If only @otimabuse 💔. You are a star!! 💃🏽

A post shared by jamielaing (@jamielaing) on

“I want to wish all my fellow competitors the best of luck. You guys are going to rock it without a doubt and I’ll be supporting from the sidelines with or without the boot.

“Just go out there and dance.”

While Jamie confessed he’s “devastated” about missing out, he sent Kelvin a sweet message.

Writing on social media, he said: “Happy Sunday everyone. I just want to give a big congratulations and shout out to Kelvin Fletcher, who is taking my place on Strictly this year.

“Buddy, thank you for your message. I just want to send one back because honestly, you are going to have the best time. You are going to rock the dancefloor, I can’t wait. Plus you have Oti so kill it, good luck.”