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24 September 2014
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Strictly Come Dancing
Dancer Erin Boag with Martin Offiah

Strictly Come Dancing

The celebrities

Martin Offiah MBE, rugby legend

The England rugby legend known as 'Chariots' scored more than 500 tries in a career that spanned 14 years, winning every medal rugby league has to offer along the way.

He enjoys dancing and was in a school dance group until the age of 15.

Famed for his speed and cunning side-step on the rugby pitch, Martin's keen to try and convert this into success on the dance floor.

Lesley Garrett CBE, opera singer

Born in Doncaster, South Yorkshire, opera singer Lesley is known for her great charisma and natural stage presence, as well as her amazing voice.

She loves dancing and plans to continue ballroom dancing with her husband for many years to come.

David Dickinson, presenter

Antique dealer and cult figure, David has no formal dance training but is always up for a new challenge.

He is famed for his smart clothes and immaculate appearance, which makes him a perfect candidate for Strictly Come Dancing.

Verona Joseph, actress

Verona plays Nurse Jess Griffin in Holby City. Although she's never learnt to dance professionally, Verona did do some contemporary dance at drama school.

Her favourite moves are the 'Beyonce style shake', R'n'B and Hip Hop.

She hopes to excel in the Latin side of the show and can't wait to get started.

Jason Wood, singing stand-up comedian

Jason is very successfully carving out a niche for himself in the comedy world with his spectacular singing impersonations and acerbic wit.

He is currently in great demand and headlines wherever he performs.

Natasha Kaplinsky, presenter

Natasha presents Breakfast News on BBC ONE with Dermot Murnaghan.

She certainly doesn't see her future on the dance floor!

Christopher Parker, actor

Christopher plays Spencer Moon in EastEnders, brother of Alfie (Shane Richie) who runs the Queen Vic pub.

Christopher receives more than 2,000 letters a week from adoring fans and while he has no formal dance training, he's certainly looking forward to the challenge.

Claire Sweeney, presenter, actress and performer

Claire played the well loved Lindsay Corkhill in Brookside for six years.

She trained at the Elliot-Clark Drama School in Liverpool and at 18 won a place at London's famous Italia Conti stage school.

This dramatic background should help Claire's performances on the show.

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