Strictly stars who sensationally quit the show from Will Young to Robert Webb

By Zara Woodcock

Strictly Come Dancing's Robert Webb recently shocked viewers after announcing he has quit the series due to 'ill health'.

The Peep Show actor said he "bit off more than he could chew" when he joined the competition two years after having open-heart surgery.

He was paired with professional dancer Dianne Buswell and the two managed to complete three amazing dances before he announced his departure.

Robert isn't the first star to quit the series suddenly over the years.

From injuries to sudden illnesses, eight celebrities have made shock exits since the show began.

The Mirror have compiled a list of the people who have left...

Jimmy Tarbuck - series 4

Comedian and actor Jimmy Tarbuck joined the cast of the competition series in 2006 after doctors told him he should be resting.

At that point, Jimmy - who was partnered with dancer Flavia Cacace - was 66 years old.

"I really wanted to dance on the show this week but I have to take the advice of the doctors who have told me I need to rest," he said at the time.

"I would like to thank my wonderful partner Flavia who has taught me so much and been patient in trying to turn this old carthorse into a proper dancer! I will really miss training with her."

Kelly Brook - series 5

Kelly Brook & Brendon Cole (BBC)

Kelly Brook was part of the show in 2007 but sadly pulled out following the death of her father Kenneth.

She was determined to stay in the BBC1 competition as it was what her father would have wanted but soon decided to go.

A BBC spokesman said at the time: "Understandably she has found it too difficult.

"Kelly has been a fantastic part of the programme, and she will be sorely missed by everyone on the show who would also like to express their deepest sympathy to Kelly and her family at this difficult time."

John Sergeant - series 6

In 2008, former ITV political editor was paired with Kristina Rihanoff but fellow judge Arlene Phillips questioned his commitment to the show.

She had claimed the star would "sit and read" during rehearsals instead of putting in the work.

When he left, he stated: "I am sorry to say I have decided to leave Strictly Come Dancing. It was always my intention to have fun on the show and I was hoping to stay in as long as possible.

"The trouble is that there is now a real danger that I might win the competition. Even for me, that would be a joke too far. I would like to thank Kristina and all those viewers who have been rooting for me through the series."

During his stint, he was constantly saved by the public vote despite his low scores week after week.

Jade Johnson - series 7

Jade Johnson and Ian Waite (PA)

Track and field athlete Jade Johnson was part of the show in 2009 but, unfortunately, had to exit due to a knee injury she sustained during rehearsals.

Before quitting, she missed a week of the live shows before she officially made the decision to go.

"It's very emotional," the athlete explained. She revealed her knee had "popped" while she was practising.

"Just sitting here is really hard for me. The knee is quite sore."

A few years later, the star said that taking part in the dancing competition left her unable to compete at the London Olympics in 2012.

"Strictly has cost me my place in the ­Olympics," she said. "I thought the show injury had healed and I was ready to compete.

"Sadly it flared up just before the trials and made it ­impossible to get through them."

Will Young - series 14

Will Young and Karen Clifton (BBC/Guy Levy)
He said leaving was the "best thing he ever did" (WireImage)

Will pulled out of Strictly back in 2014, with the star later saying it was "the best thing" ever did.

After quitting, he released a statement saying: "I will be eternally grateful to her for her direction, talent and guiding me through three wonderful dances that I will be able to show my grandkids in years to come.

"I leave with joy in my heart that I have been able to take part in one of the most loved shows on British television."

He added: "Strictly truly is the most unique family and I thank them from the bottom of my heart."

The singer has no regrets about quitting the show due to his anxiety, and later said it was "liberating".

Get all the biggest showbiz news straight to your inbox. Sign up for the free Mirror Showbiz newsletter.

Jamie Laing - series 17

Jamie Laing and Karen Hauer (BBC / Guy Levy)

Made In Chelsea star never even made it to the first competition as he ended up with a foot injury during rehearsals for the launch show.

"I'm absolutely devastated that I’m unable to continue in the competition, I was so excited to hit the dance floor," he stated.

"I would like to wish the lovely couples all the very best and hope they enjoy their time on the show to the fullest."

He was quickly replaced by Emmerdale actor Kelvin Fletcher - who was partnered with Oti Mabuse.

Jamie returned to give it a second chance when he was partnered with Karen Hauer last year.

He got to the final week but missed out on being victorious to Bill Bailey.

Will Bayley - series 17

Will Bayley and Janette Manrara (BBC)

After sustaining a leg injury, Will had to leave series 17 of the BBC show.

The Paralympian landed weirdly after jumping from a raised platform during in-studio rehearsals, causing him to miss a show.

"I'm gutted my Strictly journey has had to come to an end. I've loved being part of the show," he said.

Bayley said: "I want to say a special thank you to Janette [Manrara] for believing in me, and giving me the confidence to believe in myself.

"The things we achieved, from our couple's choice dance, through to the lifts in our salsa, will stay with me forever. I've had the time of my life."

Nicola Adams - series 18

Nicola Adams and Katya Jones (BBC/Guy Levy)

Last year's show was a strange time for everyone to participate due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The former professional boxer was partnered with Katya Jones, but the professional dancer ended up testing positive for Covid-19.

Nicola and Katya were then axed from the series due to strict protocols concerning coronavirus safety.

In a statement, Nicola said: "Hey guys! I'm absolutely devastated my Strictly journey has come to an end so soon. I had so much more to give and so many people to win this for!

"But I just want to say a huge thank you to Katya for being the best dance partner anyone could ask for. She pushed me way out of my comfort zone and it’s been an incredible experience.

"I'm gutted to be out of the competition but in these unprecedented times and as frustrating as it is, the COVID measures in place are to keep everyone safe, and I'm doing what I can to help.

"I'm gutted to be out of the competition but in these unprecedented times and as frustrating as it is, the COVID measures in place are to keep everyone safe, and I'm doing what I can to help."

Do you have a story to sell? Get in touch with us at webcelebs@trinitymirror.com or call us direct 0207 29 33033.


What is inkl?

Important stories

See news based on value, not advertising potential. Get the latest news from around the world.

Trusted newsrooms

We bring you reliable news from the world’s most experienced journalists in the most trusted newsrooms.

Ad-free reading

Read without interruptions, distractions or intrusions of privacy.