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Katya Jones joins Mike Bushell and Strictly family on his birthday

The former Strictly star turned 54 on Wednesday

Jenni McKnight

They formed a close bond during their time on Strictly Come Dancing, and just because they're no longer in the competition, it doesn't mean their friendship has come to an end. Katya Jones proved on Wednesday just how much she values her new relationship with former dance partner Mike Bushell, by paying him a touching tribute on his 54th birthday.  Uploading a series of throwback images of herself and Mike sharing a spooky afternoon tea, Katya gushed: "Let’s raise the glass in honour of your BIRTHDAY @mikebushellofficial! I know you’re having the best day, because you are spending it with your Strictly family!! Always stay just the way you are! Wishing a special birthday to a special person! All my love, Katya x."

WATCH: Katya and Mike play Hello/Goodbye

Earlier this month, Katya revealed the exciting news that she and Mike will dance together again on the Strictly Come Dancing Live Tour. Perhaps Mike is spending his special day in rehearsals with the rest of the cast as the tour kicks off in Birmingham on 16 January. Revealing the news on her Instagram account, Katya said: "We’re back!!! Beyond ecstatic that @mikebushellofficial and I get to dance together for a little longer for @strictlycomedancinglive!!! Touring around the country is going to be amazing!! WHICH TWO DANCES DO YOU THINK WE SHOUlD RECREATE?" Katya's followers were quick to offer up their votes, with many suggesting the couple perform their Quickstep and Charleston.

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Mike turned 54 on Wednesday

Last month, Katya and Mike met up to watch themselves on television for the first time. And while analysing their final moments on the show – which included Katya's skirt getting tangled over Mike's head as he attempted to pick her up – the pro dancer admitted that she had been left out when the rest of the Strictly stars joined them on the dance floor to do the Conga for their final dance.

MORE: Strictly's Chris Ramsey reveals heartbreaking detail of final dance after mics left on

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Mike and Katya will dance together again on the Strictly tour

MORE: Strictly Come Dancing: final songs and dances revealed

As they watched the action, Katya reflected: "Conga! And then they wouldn't let me in – watch me try to squeeze in! I literally had to go to the back of the line." Reliving the moment hosts Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman joined them, Mike then reflected: "Tess joined in, Claudia, best exit dance ever. Bruno, Motsi, they joined in too."

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