Television chef Ainsley Harriott and Eastenders star Kellie Bright have been named as the second and third contestants for this year's series of Strictly Come Dancing.
Harriott was the first to be confirmed, as the news broke on Tuesday evening (11 July) that he would be joining the line-up. "I must admit that I do love to dance, but doing it in front of the nation is a whole different matter," the former Ready Steady Cook presenter said in a statement to BBC News. "In my day job the only type of salsa I know about is the one in my recipes, so I am looking forward to rising to the challenge. Bring it on!
"When it comes to dancing it is about the discipline and how much effort you put in. If you put the time in then you can be a bit more expressive."
Bright, who plays Linda Carter on the BBC One soap, revealed her involvement on Chris Evans' Radio 2 breakfast show early this morning (12 August). Talking to the host, the soap star opened up about why she signed up, saying: "One of the main reasons I decided to do the show is the fact that I'm going to be 40 this year and to be the fittest I've ever been at this point in my life would be a great thing. I just want to see what my body can still do, you know what I mean, before it all goes kaput."
The former Bad Girls actress confessed that she is keen to get back into a fitness regime after falling out of keeping one up when she became a mother with husband Paul Stocker a few years ago.
"I haven't really done any exercise since I had my little boy - and he's three-and-a-half now," she told Evans. "I started training about three weeks ago at my Cross Fit Gym, which offers a special type of training. It's all about strengthening and increasing your body's metabolic condition. It's about an hour's workout. I do exercises like flipping tyres. I have always enjoyed exercise but not it's going to be a priority. One of the perks of doing Strictly is how fit it makes you."
The pair will be joining news presenter Jeremy Vine, who was the first contestant to be revealed, on the well-loved dancing contest. The 13th series will start in September so all of the other participants will presumably be announced in the next couple of weeks. Celebrities that have been rumoured to feature on the line-up include Kirsty Gallacher, Peter Andre, Ben Shephard, Jamelia, Dermot O' Leary and Richard and Judy.