Stacey Dooley has denied claims that she was the driving force behind boyfriend Kevin Clifton quitting Strictly Come Dancing. The pro dancer announced on Friday that he has decided to leave the show after seven years. But shortly after, reports claimed that it was Stacey who "pushed" his decision. However, the documentary-maker quashed the rumours, writing on Twitter: "Honestly, we knew this would happen. And so it starts, again…. Utter nonsense." Her fans were quick to rally around her and Kevin, with one commenting: "Don't worry Stacey we don't believe a word of it!" While another added: "I believe you leave at the top. @keviclifton is leaving at the top as the best of the best. Good luck to you both."
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Kevin broke the news of his departure on social media on Friday. Sharing a heartfelt statement on Twitter, he wrote: "The past seven years have been some of the most wonderful years of my life. I am grateful to the BBC and Strictly Come Dancing for giving me the opportunity to have been a part of something truly special. Since first being called 'Kevin From Grimsby' by Sir Bruce Forsyth in 2013 I have experienced the highs of 5 finals, winning a Guinness World record on It Takes Two, the Strictly Arena tour glitterball and then the ultimate of winning the 2018 series with Stacey Dooley."
He added: "After finishing last series with the Children in Need trophy and the Christmas Special I want to leave on a high and have therefore decided the time has come to move on and focus on other areas of my life and career. I want to thank all of the pros for inspiring me every day as well as my celebrity partners. The whole team behind the scenes have always made the Strictly family what it is and the loveliest show to work for.
Kevin Clifton was on Strictly for seven years
"Thank you to anyone who has ever voted for me and my partners. It means the world. And a special thank you to Jason Gilkison for always believing in me. To me Strictly always has been and always will be the best show on TV and has been an absolute dream and honour to be a part of. Pre 2013 I used to watch every week. Now I look forward to returning to being a fan and cheering on my friends who keep dancing. Kevin Clifton."
Kevin Clifton and Stacey Dooley won Strictly in 2018
Responding to his post, Stacey wrote: "I could burst with pride. Undeniably, the most successful pro on Strictly. Won everything, treated everyone with respect and kindness, worked SO bloody hard and now, leaving on a high. You will always be the King of Strictly."
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