Wednesday 24 Sep 2014
Actor and local boy Craig Kelly tonight became the eighth celebrity to be voted off the seventh series of BBC One's Strictly Come Dancing in a special show live from Blackpool's Tower Ballroom – the spiritual home of all things ballroom.
In week eight of the nation's favourite dance contest, live from the splendour of the world-famous Tower Ballroom, all nine of the remaining celebrity contestants and their professional partners took to the floor to perform a variety of show-stopping dances.
After all the couples had performed, the combination of the judges' scores and viewers' votes left Craig and his professional partner Flavia Cacace in the bottom two and facing a dance-off with actor Ricky Groves and his professional partner Erin Boag.
Craig and Flavia then performed their cha-cha-cha to Easy Lover and Ricky and Erin performed their salsa to Acuyuye for the second time.
After both couples had danced it was down to the judges to cast their deciding vote.
Making their decision on who to save, the judges commented:
Craig Revel Horwood, straight to the point, said: "I'd like to save Ricky and Erin."
Alesha Dixon affectionately said: "Craig, you've been very sweet my love, but I have to save Ricky and Erin."
Bruno Tonioli said: "Based on what I saw, I have to save Ricky and Erin."
Speaking about his time in the competition, Craig Kelly, whose aim throughout the competition was to make it to Blackpool to dance in front of his home town, said: "I feel pretty amazing really. It's great that I made it to Blackpool. I mean, any other week was a massive Brucie bonus.
"And, to have danced with the best dancer in the world, the last two-and-a-half months have been incredible!"
On tonight's show Craig and Flavia scored a total of 17 points for their cha-cha-cha from the judges – his lowest score of the competition.
As part of Strictly's Blackpool special, there was a performance by legendary rocker Rod Stewart, who sang It's The Same Old Song.
Making it a family affair, Rod's wife, model and ex-Strictly contestant Penny Lancaster returned to the dance floor with professional dancer Matthew Cutler to perform a cha-cha-cha during Rod's song.
To commemorate Remembrance Sunday all of the remaining celebrity dancers and their professional partners took to the floor for a Forties-inspired swing dance – the first group dance for the celebrities since the beginning of the series.
They were accompanied by former Strictly Champion Jill Halfpenny, who was crowned winner in series two in 2005, the last time that the show was live from Blackpool.
And, as an added bonus, Bruce Forsyth accompanied the group swing dance with a rendition of Almost Like Being In Love.
Making the most of the grandeur of Blackpool's Tower Ballroom, the Strictly professional dancers also performed a group Viennese waltz to I Put A Spell On You.
As the competition hots up, next week the remaining eight celebrities and their professional partners will perform a range of dances to stay in the competition and be in with a chance of being crowned Strictly Come Dancing Champion 2009.
Strictly Come Dancing is available on BBC One and BBC HD.
Tune in to the next episode on Saturday 14 November 2009 at 6.50pm.
Don't forget you can get all the up-to-date gossip on Strictly Come Dancing's sister show It Takes Two, weekdays at 6.30pm on BBC Two.
For more information and gossip, visit bbc.co.uk/strictlycomedancing or follow on Twitter: bbcstrictly.
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