Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Britain's Got Talent: Ashley Banjo in his early Diversity days vs now

Ashley and the rest of the dance troupe won the show in 2009

bgt ashley
Francesca Shillcock
Francesca ShillcockSenior Features Writer
Share this:

Move over Simon Cowell, we're loving Ashley Banjo as a judge on Britain's Got Talent! The dancer, choreographer and TV presenter has wowed viewers since joining the panel to replace the music mogul after his back injury, and it seems Ashley has slotted back into his BGT home with ease.

No doubt Ashley loved returning to his old stomping ground. The TV personality earned his stripes on the show way back in 2009 when he and his dance troupe Diversity walked on stage hoping to blow the audience and judges away.

MORE: Simon Cowell receives big news during recovery from bike accident

Ashley Banjo shares adorable video of daughter Rose

The group managed to receive high praise from the panel and a high number of votes from the viewers at home week after week, and eventually made it to the final where they went head-to-head with Susan Boyle. Diversity beat the odds and became reigning champions, beating Susan Boyle and Julian Smith who came second and third respectively.

MORE: Diversity's Jordan Banjo and Perri Kiely reveal how they've coped with controversy over BLM routine on BGT

ashley bgt© Photo: Rex

Ashley and Diversity won the show in 2009

But their success didn't stop there. Diversity, which consists of Ashley among other known members including his brother Jordan Banjo and Perri Kiely, went on to perform on their own tours and Ashley began judging on Sky show Got To Dance alongside Adam Garcia and Pussycat Doll member Kimberley Wyatt.

The group went on to complete numerous tours, and in recent years Ashley became a judge on Dancing on Ice.

ashley new bgt© Photo: Rex

Ashley is now a judge on the talent show

Away from his professional career, Ashley is also now a proud father-of-two. The star married his long-time girlfriend Francesca Abbott, a dancer and talent manager, back in 2015. They've only had eyes for each other for a long time, tying the knot after an impressive ten years of dating.

MORE: BGT judge Ashley Banjo shares rare video of daughter Rose - and it's adorable

The couple are proud parents to daughter Rose, one, and son Micah, who came into the world in March, soon after the start of lockdown.

The 31-year-old had previously shared that the couple initially struggled to have a family, sharing on Instagram: "I don't know if words alone can explain how full of joy and happiness we both are. It has been a more difficult journey to this point than most people know."

Like this story? Sign up to our newsletter to get other stories like this delivered straight to your inbox.

More TV and Film

See more