Celebrities including Cilla Black have come out in support of John Sergeant, who sensationally quit Strictly Come Dancing on Wednesday.

Talking to BBC Radio 5 Live, Cilla said she had been ‘shocked and stunned’ by the news adding that she believed John had ‘bowed to the pressure’ of being publicly insulted by the BBC1 show’s judges who feared that viewers favoured John over stronger performers.

She said: “I think it is an absolute disgrace because it is a public show.

“It is supposed to be entertainment – so yes the judges judge on the dancing, but at the end of the day it is the public that pays money for the licence and it is up to them to judge who they want on the show.”

“I am absolutely disgusted by the whole thing, John I love you.”

Louisa Lytton, who competed in Strictly Come Dancing in 2006, said the point of the show was to entertain and feels he shouldn’t have felt pressured into leaving.

The Bill star said: “I’m really upset and really disappointed. I think the whole show is about entertainment and I can’t believe it has got to the point where the entertainer has had to quit. It is a bit strange.

“What people need to understand is that we are not there to be professional dancers, we are doing it for fun. We are doing it for charity, more importantly.