Laura Whitmore: ‘I’ll miss I’m a Celeb… but I’ve always wanted to do Strictly!’

Laura Whitmore always needed nerves of steel dealing with all those creepy crawlies in the I'm a Celebrity jungle. But the pressure's really on this weekend as Laura performs her first dance on Strictly...

Laura Whitmore has admitted she’ll miss not hosting I’m a Celebrity’s spin-off show in Australia this year – but is delighted to be doing Strictly Come Dancing.

Laura confirmed back in April that she’d be ‘hanging up her jungle boots’ as co-host of ITV2’s I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here Now after five years. It was soon revealed what she’d be doing instead as she was unveiled as one of the 15 famous faces taking part in Strictly.

As it was confirmed on Thursday that former Queens of the jungle, Vicky Pattison and Stacey Solomon, would be replacing Laura as hosts of I’m a Celeb’s spin-off show, Laura herself is gearing up for her first live Strictly performance this weekend.

And Laura told What’s On TV that, while she’ll miss not being in Oz, she’s looking forward to doing something new.

“I’ll definitely miss it, it’s one of the best shows but what a show to be doing instead! I did that show for five years, which is a long time, so it’s fun to move on to something different and I’ve always wanted to do Strictly,” enthused Laura, who’ll be dancing a cha cha with her professional partner Giovanni Pernice to ‘Venus’ by Shocking Blue.

Strictly 2016 Laura and Giovanni

Will Laura be hot to trot with her dance partner Giovanni Pernice?

Laura is good friends with Britain’s Got Talent judge Alesha Dixon and former X Factor host Caroline Flack, who won Strictly in 2007 and 2014 respectively. But she’s trying not to feel the pressure…

“Please don’t compare me,” begged Laura. “Lots of my friends who’ve been on the show, like Caroline and Alesha, I’m like: ‘Why do they all do really well?’ I’m not thinking like that. I just want to learn how to dance – it’s a specific skill that not a lot of people get the opportunity to learn.”

She added: “I love dancing but I’ve never learnt how to dance professionally. I’m alright on the dancefloor. I’m like Bambi on Ice… limbs everywhere!”

Strictly Come Dancing starts on Friday September 23 at 9pm, and continues on Saturday September 24 on BBC1.