Bradley Walsh reveals he's turned down Strictly Come Dancing – and the reason he'll never do it

HE'S done everything from presenting gameshows and crooning on albums to comedy and some serious acting.

But Bradley Walsh drew the line at dancing – even though he was invited to take part in Strictly.

The star of The Chase and upcoming shows Take Off with Holly Willoughby on BBC1 and The Larkins on ITV, says it's all part of playing to his strengths.

He said: “Here’s the trick of doing stuff you can get away with, you’ve got to be brutally honest with yourself. If you don’t get it you can’t sell it.

“If you can’t dance, you can’t sell it, no matter how big a showman you are. Stick to what you know best. I’ve been asked a couple of times to go on Strictly.

“But I’m not a dancer.  I don’t even think I’m a good dad dancer. I’m a bad dad dancer, which makes things even worse.”

Bradley, who has been married to Donna Derby for 24 years, was not always as choosy though and he advises rookie stars to take any opportunity they can — and to commit to it.

He said: “I always remember, the great Bill Shankly, who was the manager of Liverpool back in the day, and Huddersfield Town, once said something, and I’ve never forgotten it, ‘Even if you end up sweeping the roads, don’t cheat, sweep them properly’.

If you don’t get it you can’t sell it.

“If you’ve been given a job and you’ve signed up to do it, do it, don’t half do it. I’ve given talks and stuff like that at schools and drama colleges  and they ask, ‘What’s the secret?’. And there is no secret.

 “The easiest part of our industry is giving up. That’s the easiest bit. ‘I can’t do that, I’m not a good enough actor, I’m not this’. That’s nonsense, there’s something for everyone.

“You’ve got to realise the opportunity when it comes along, but I think that comes from your background, your childhood, your upbringing.

“I was brought up from a council estate in Watford, lovely it was, fantastic, we had the most fantastic time. Those wonderful summers when we were kids and stuff like that.

“But there’s also a certain hunger that breeds. You will have a certain desire.”

Bradley started out  as  Pontins Bluecoat before going on to star  in some of TV’s biggest shows — but he  has a surprising career highlight.

He said: “My greatest thing, I’ll never forget, I was in pantomime at Milton Keynes and my son Barney played my sidekick. He was like eight.

“I taught him to deliver the lines and wow, he came on, and he stole that part of the show, and I remember coming down at the curtain call, packed house, 1,600 people, opening night, and he got the most fantastic round of applause.

“I was so proud to be on the stage with my son at the age of eight. I mean, I didn’t start until I was a Bluecoat when I was 21.

“And then I didn’t turn professional until I was 26.

“And he’s such a lovely guy. My son Barney is the man I always wanted to be because he’s so laid-back and so humble.”

Take Off with Bradley & Holly starts on BBC1 on July 24.


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