Brendan Cole has finally spoken out on the rumours surrounding his first ever series of Strictly Come Dancing, during which he was partnered with newsreader Natasha Kaplinsky – going on to win the dance competition. Brendan split with long-time girlfriend and fellow professional Camilla Dallerup during the series, sparking the term 'the Strictly curse'. The now-axed star has given an interview to John Bishop, which will air later in the year, admitting: "you can't hide chemistry." But he added: "I didn’t have an affair. Camilla chose to leave. Once you do something, after that it’s not an affair."
Brendan with his first ever Strictly partner Natasha
Brendan and Camilla were together for eight years, and had recently got engaged when the first-ever series of Strictly aired. After their split, they were thought to remain friends, and did continue to dance together on the show as professional partners – though Camilla spoke out in 2015 about her heartbreak at the time.
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She told the Daily Record: "To this day I’ve no idea whether it was her fame and celebrity that swept him away or if he really did feel a strong connection with her. It was probably a bit of both." She added: "My parents came to one of the early shows. It should have been one of my proudest moments. Instead I was filled with shame and humiliation.
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"Because, of all the shows to choose, Brendan chose that one to congratulate his partner by kissing her on the lips. Right in front of the audience, and right in front of his future parents-in-law, he was kissing the woman I now thought of as my arch-rival for his love. I was broken."
With wife Zoe
Brendan is now happily married to wife Zoe Cole, who he shares two children with, while Camilla has also moved on with former Hollyoaks actor Kevin Sacre. The 2018 run of Strictly Come Dancing, the first ever without Brendan, is set to launch in September.