Strictly's Angela Rippon sets herself a new dancing challenge, opens up about reuniting with Kai Widdrington

Virgin Radio

20 Mar 2024, 10:56

Angela Rippon and Kai Widdrington on Strictly Come Dancing

Credit: Rex

Strictly contestant Angela Rippon has revealed she’s not done with the dance floor after competing on the 2023 contest. 

The 79-year-old became the oldest contestant to take part in the competition last year, and wowed everyone with her dance skills, making it all the way to Blackpool before being sent home. 

Despite not landing in the final, Angela has picked up a love of dancing in her day-to-day life, and is also excited to reunite with her dance partner Kai Widdrington outside of the ballroom. 

Speaking exclusively to, the Rip Off Britain star revealed she’s not had a chance to miss Kai because the pair have become great friends in the Strictly process. 

She confessed: “I'm going to be doing a job with Kai and Nadia [Bychkova] in Hayling island in a couple of weeks time. The nice thing about that side of Strictly was that we actually became mates. We got on so well. I love working on the series, because I love dancing. I found that doing six hours a day, five days a week in training. It got me fitter than I've ever been.  I think I'm probably stronger and fitter now than I've been for a very, very long time.”

While Angela admitted she won’t be shimmying with Kai any time soon, the star has set herself a new challenge to continue dancing - and is hoping to get the county on their feet. 

She explained: “When I was doing the programme, because I'm 79, a lot of the comments that I got were from people, not just older people, but a number of young children who apparently used to say to their parents, ‘Granny can't do that!’ 

“The number of people who have been very generous, and very gracious in their comments, saying that I inspired them because of what I was doing. And as a result, they're going to exercise or they're going to dance. I don't want to lose the momentum of bringing that level of interest in dance.”

On the progress of her mission to get everyone rushing to the dance floor, Angela has already laid the groundwork with dance organisations to get the country to go to “dance classes, whatever it is, and to dance in some form.”

Angela continued: “It really will keep you fit and strong. To get that message out now to the public that keep dancing, get fit, or get dancing, get fit, that’s what you should be doing.”

The broadcaster was chatting to as part of her new campaign with Smart Energy GB and National Energy Action to encourage more people to get a Smart Meter. 

Speaking about how more older people should look to get a Smart Meter fitted, Angela implored: “It takes all the anxiety out of running out of credit, it takes the anxiety away from your family who think, ‘Oh, what happens if they run out of credit, and I can't get them on the phone or they're cold, or they can't make make a cup of tea and I can't get in touch with them?’ It takes all that anxiety away, without you actually having to do very much.”