In the perfect finale to the Castle’s 900th anniversary year, a star-studded
cast recently visited Leeds Castle to film part of the Strictly Come Dancing
Christmas Special, which will be aired on BBC One Christmas Day at 4.40pm.
Celebrities such as Joe Sugg, Mark Wright and Debbie McGee descended on the historic
attraction near Maidstone for a magical backdrop to this year’s festive programme,
which last Christmas was the second highest watched programme on the BBC, attracting
an audience of 5.8 million.
A behind the scenes trailer posted last week on the BBC Strictly Come Dancing Facebook page,
gives a glimpse of dance routines performed on the Castle Island, at the Christmas
Market and even a routine performed by two of the professional dancers in the
Castle’s Yellow Drawing Room.
Choreographer Sharna Bugess said in the video: “We are here in Kent at Leeds Castle. It’s so beautiful and we’re doing the opening number for the Strictly Christmas Special. The inspiration for this number is the magic of Christmas.”
YouTube sensation Joe Sugg said:
“It’s Christmas trees everywhere, it’s feeling very festive.” The
previous runner up will be dancing with former 2018 pro and his now girlfriend
The Strictly Come Dancing team were not the only TV crew to visit the castle
this year, with Countryfile popping by in January and Phil Spencer’s Stately
Homes also filming for a week shortly before Strictly came to call.
Gemma Wright, Senior PR and Filming Officer for Leeds Castle said:
“We were absolutely thrilled to host Strictly at the Castle for their Christmas Special, in this our very special 900th year. The production team were so impressed with our beautiful State Rooms and the festive market and fairground, they felt we offered the perfect backdrop for their Christmas Day show.
The weather was against us on the filming day but the torrential rain did mean some mean ‘down time’ playing board games in Santa’s Grotto during the Christmas market evening shots, so we had lots of fun!
I hope this Christmas Day episode will be fabulous exposure for Leeds Castle and will bring people to Kent to see one of Kent’s oldest attractions, where the festive Strictly was filmed!”.