New Strictly Come Dancing judge Alesha Dixon has shrugged off criticism of her debut and said she would not quit the show.

The decision to replace choreographer Arlene Phillips, 66, with the 30-year-old singer who won the show in 2007 has been controversial since the start, with accusations that the show’s producers were ageist.

The BBC’s message boards have been inundated with comments from fans demanding Arlene is reinstated. Many say Alesha does not have the technical knowledge to judge the dancing of others.

Alesha told the Daily Mirror it was not nice to hear criticism of her judging remarks so far, but added: “You can’t please all of the people all of the time.”

She added: “I am not a quitter. It’s not in my nature to consider quitting.”

Alesha, who first shot to fame in girl band Mis-Teeq, said her role was to give an understanding of how hard it was for the celebrities to perform to the standards expected, a perspective which she said was missing before.

“We are just starting on a long road and I know I can help make the path smoother for some of the celebs.”

The BBC said it was “delighted” with Alesha’s debut as a judge.