Strictly Come Dancing‘s head judge Len Goodman has said he fears for the BBC1’s show’s future after fellow judge Arlene Phillips was axed this week.

Speaking to actors’ newspaper The Stage shortly after it was confirmed that Phillips was being replaced by former series winner Alesha Dixon, Goodman said, “I hope the BBC is not trying to introduce a younger audience.”

“I’d imagine the show attracts an older audience to what you’d get on The X Factor. I hope it does not affect the fan base.”

He added that he hoped the new judging line-up – which also includes ballet dancer Darcey Bussell – would not change the perspective of the panel.

“I am sad Arlene is no longer one of the judges because we got to know each other,” Goodman admitted.

“We all got on, and we knew what to expect, so it sort of changes the whole dynamic of the panel, which is a bit scary.”

“I do feel sorry for her because we are friends. But who knows, maybe Alesha will be fantastic and bring a different dynamic to the judging panel?”

Meanwhile, property guru Kirstie Allsop is reported to be so appalled at the BBC’s decision to give Phillips the boot that she is considering quitting TV herself.

Allsop, who fronts Location, Location, Location on Channel 4, told The Sun, “I feel very sad for Arlene. TV is a harsh world, I must find myself a new occupation before it’s too late!”