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Helen Skelton tells of her biggest challenge in Strictly Come Dancing

This year’s Strictly launch was delayed following the Queen’s death with the series now launching on September 23.

Helen Skelton (BBC/PA)
Helen Skelton (BBC/PA)

Helen Skelton has revealed the ‘biggest challenge’ for her while competing in Strictly Come Dancing will be “physical closeness” with her professional dance partner because she is not “touchy feely”.

The TV and radio presenter, 39, is among the 15 celebrities hoping to dazzle the judges on the BBC One show which returns with its launch show on September 23.

Asked what she thought would be the biggest challenge, she said: “I’m not that touchy feely, so I think the physical closeness I’ll need to have with my partner will take a bit of getting used to!”.

The Sport Industry Awards 2022
Helen Skelton arriving at the The Sport Industry Awards 2022, at Evolution London (Jonathan Brady/PA)

Skelton has become a familiar face on TV, presenting various shows throughout her career including BBC’s Countryfile, Newsround and Blue Peter.She has also worked on several major sporting events and was recently announced as the new host of the new-look BBC Radio 5 Live Sunday morning show.

The TV star said of wanting to do Strictly: “I just wanted to do something fun!

“It was a good chance for my family to see me smiling and it’s a fun adventure.

“Anybody who’s had anything to do with Strictly will say, the make-up people are the best, the costume people are the best, the set designers are the best, the dancers are the best.

“So why wouldn’t you want to do something where everyone is literally at the top of their game and loving what they do?”.

During her time at Blue Peter, she took on various challenges including completing the Namibia Ultra Marathon, cycling to the South Pole and kayaking more than 2,018 miles down the Amazon River.

She has also published a number of books including the novel Amy Wild: Amazon Summer.

Skelton said she welcomed being ‘Strictly-fied’ adding: “I am here for it! I have three children under seven, a very energetic dog and have lived in a house renovation for the best part of three years, so Strictly-fy me up please!”.

In April, she revealed on Instagram that she and husband Richie Myler, whom she married in December 2013, were “no longer a couple”.

Strictly Come Dancing launches on September 23 at 7pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

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