BBC Strictly breaks silence on potential Amanda Abbington finale appearance amid snub rumours

Amanda Abbington had danced with Giovanni Pernice
Amanda Abbington had danced with Giovanni Pernice in Strictly
Alex Davies

By Alex Davies

Published: 13/12/2023

- 15:21

The actor quit the dance competition for "personal reasons"

Strictly Come Dancing has finally addressed whether or not Amanda Abbington will be returning to the show as part of its grand finale on Saturday.

Abbington, who'd been partnered with Giovanni Pernice at the start of the series, quit Strictly five weeks in.

She's remained a supporter of a number of her former Strictly castmates, however, paying tribute to Angela Rippon after her exit and throwing her backing behind Angela Scanlon when she lost to Layton Williams in the dance-off.

Abbington has also since made a return to her job on the radio, although hasn't appeared on-screen since her abrupt Strictly exit.

At the time, rumours circulated that Abbington was in a feud with pro partner Pernice after she omitted him from her exit statement.

And now, it seems the pair won't be able to reunite and put that speculation to bed as a Strictly spokesperson has confirmed once and for all that Abbington won't be back for the final.

WATCH HERE: Amanda Abbington returns to radio after Strictly exit

"Amanda decided to withdraw from the competition, therefore she will not be returning for the final," a spokesperson told the Mirror.

The definitive statement from Strictly comes a month after a source first told the publication Abbington had snubbed a return.

Despite the cast of Strictly all being invited back for the final show of the series, a source told the same publication that Abbington's "response to the invitation was she’d not be back".

News of Abbington's no-show for the Strictly finale has already divided the fanbase ahead of Saturday's show with many taking to the web to share their thoughts on the statement.

Amanda Abbington had been partnered with Giovanni Pernice on Strictly

Amanda Abbington left Strictly just five weeks in


On the online forum Reddit, one fan argued: "Glad I don’t have to see her again and the BBC learned their lesson of casting such a controversial contestant and won’t do this again. I do hope Giovanni is back next year and gets a better partner, because I miss his Halloween routines."

A second added: "Makes sense to me. If you leave the show of your own volition, I don't think it's right to come back. It's very different to leaving for an injury or illness."

However, others rushed to the star's defence, including another Redditor who penned: "That's a shame. I love Amanda."

"I enjoyed her dancing - it’s a shame we won’t see her again," added another while a third fan shared: "Personally, I think she underestimated the amount of time and hard work required to get her to a good standard of dance ability.

WATCH NOW: Amanda Abbington speaks out on Strictly 'boycott' due to tweets prior to show

"I have read that Giovanni takes training very seriously, he may have been keen to ensure she was a 'contender'. There is no shame in finding yourself out of your depth, it takes a lot of courage to admit that you can't cope with everything going on around you. Putting your own wellbeing first is important." (sic)

Abbington was faced with "boycott" calls and floods of online criticism before she ever stepped foot on the Strictly dance floor due to posts she shared on X, formerly Twitter.

The Strictly contestant even released a video on Instagram insisting she wasn't transphobic after she criticised clips of adult drag queens performing in front of children.

GB News has contacted the BBC for comment.

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