Brendan Cole has revealed that he won’t be returning for the 2018 series of Strictly Come Dancing.
The shock announcement was made during an appearance on ITV’s Lorraine this morning. The professional dancer, who has appeared on every series of Strictly, was most recently partnered with Good Morning Britain’s Charlotte Hawkins.
Admitting it was hard to talk about, Cole said, “The BBC haven’t renewed my contract. We get contracted year upon year. They’ve made an editorial decision to not have me back on the show. I’m a little bit in shock. I’m quite emotional, a bit raw about it.”
Going on to explain how the news was broken to him Cole added, “It’s done via a process of a phone call and stuff. I have had 15 incredible series on the show. I’m very proud of the whole show. It’s a great team.”
Over his time on the series Cole was renowned for clashing with the judges and airing his strong opinions on the critique directed towards his celebrity partner.
Cole told Lorraine that he wanted to stay with the show.
“Yeah [I still wanted to be part of it]. I’ve always said as long as I’ve got a passion for it I want to be there. My passion is still very much there. I’ll miss being part of the team. I’ll miss being a Strictly dancer. It’s kind of weird to imagine yourself not having that as your… I do a lot of other things of course, but the main thing I’ve been known for is to be a dancer on Strictly. Very odd to even say this out loud. It feels quite raw.”
Looking to the future Cole explained, “This is the exciting thing, it’s going to open up many opportunities. I’ve always been, I wouldn’t say tied down to Strictly, that’s the wrong thing to say, but that Strictly takes up such a large chunk of your time – five months of the year the pros are involved […] I’ve had to pass up so many opportunities that have come my way.”
Lorraine airs on ITV weekdays from 8.30am – 9.25am.