Paula Radcliffe
Retired marathon runner Paula Radcliffe is reportedly in talks to take part in the next series of Strictly Come Dancing Reuters

Marathon runner Paula Radcliffe is in talks to star in the new series of Strictly Come Dancing, according to reports.

Despite retiring from competing in 2015, bosses at the BBC are said to be pulling out all of the stops to secure the 43-year-old record breaking athlete for the dance show.

A source said: "Paula is a bona fide athletics legend, and the bosses are convinced she would be a hit on Strictly if she agreed to take part."

Revealing that she is a "massive fan of the show", they added to The Sun: "She has told the Strictly team that she needs time to discuss it with her friends and family, which is what she is doing at the moment but they are all urging her to go for it."

She would not be the first professional athlete to take part in the Saturday night staple. Last year saw Olympic gymnast Claudia Fragapane reach the semi-final with partner AJ Pritchard.

Another Olympic gymnast Louis Smith also took part in 2012 where he went on to win the series after triumphing over former Girls Aloud singer Kimberley Walsh in the final.

The 15th series of Strictly Come Dancing kicks off in the autumn and it's not only the celeb line-up that has got people talking but also who will replace judge Len Goodman.

The beloved 73-year-old announced last year that he would be stepping down as head of the judging panel.

While no official announcement has yet been made, reports claim former Dancing with the Stars judge Shirley Ballas is a hot contender to take Len's place.

Other names which have been touted include ex-Strictly professional dancer Karen Hardy, long-serving pros Anton Du Beke and Brendan Cole, plus, Ireland's Dancing with the Stars judges Loraine Barry and Brian Redmond.

len goodman
Fans are wondering who will replace head judge Len Goodman when Strictly Come Dancing returns for its 15th series in the autumn Stuart Wilson/Getty Images