EastEnders star Kellie Bright talks Strictly, Danny Dyer and the emotional reason why she is really taking to the dancefloor

We’re used to seeing Kellie Bright right at the centre of the usual EastEnders drama as Linda Carter. But this weekend she’s going to be ditching Linda’s pink tracksuit for the glitz and glam of Strictly Come Dancing.

And while she’s got the support of her friends, family and on screen hubby, Danny Dyer -who she said has ‘been a massive supporter to me, he’s one of my best friends, and he’ll be championing me’ – there is one person she says she’s often be thinking of while on the dancefloor – her late Nan.

We caught up with Kellie to find out how she’s feeling in the quest for the Glitterball trophy.

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How will you combine Strictly with Eastenders?

I’m going to be working very, very hard. The Eastenders’ studio is over the road so I could probably walk. I don’t live too far away either so I’ll be camping here! But it’s going to be full on and I knew that when I said yes so only got myself to blame.

Are you going to pull Danny Dyer to practice between takes?

No! I’m going to practice with Michael Di Angelo because he’s done it. Danny will be cheering me on!

Any soap rivalry with former Corrie star Georgia?

No, I just want to look after her! There’s never soap rivalry between people on Strictly – I think it’s a media thing.

 Soapstars have a history of doing well. Feeling the pressure?

I always feel the pressure but I put myself under pressure with my life! I don’t feel like anyone is putting pressure on me but after Jake Wood, I do feel like I have a hard act to follow.

What have your family and friends been like?

My dad is a massive Strictly fan, more so than my mum! They’re really, really excited. My nana Joy died last year and she’s probably the reason that I ever ended up performing – she did amateur dramatics when she was younger and she was the life and soul – and she would have loved every second of it. I’m going to be thinking about her a lot.

Lucy Gornall