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Strictly Come Dancing star Neil Jones and fiancée Chyna Mills introduce baby girl and reveal her name

The couple welcomed their first child earlier this month

Neil Jones and Chyna Mills introduce baby Havana
Emily Horan
Emily HoranEntertainment Editor
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Cuba is known the world over as a vibrant cultural capital of dance, and the birthplace of styles from Salsa to Cha Cha Cha to Tango. So it seems fitting that when Strictly Come Dancing professional Neil Jones welcomed his newborn daughter, he took inspiration by naming her after the country's capital, Havana. 

"Cuba is the home of dance and very multicultural so it was perfect; it sums us up," says former British, European and world champion Neil, who is dancing on air as he and his fiancée Chyna Mills open the doors to their Leeds home to introduce little Havana Jones exclusively with HELLO!.

Neil Jones and Chyna Mills posing with baby Havana
Neil Jones and Chyna Mills posing with baby Havana

"We're running on not much sleep and pure joy," smiles Neil, who is delighted to be sharing this special moment with us after the couple announced their surprise engagement and pregnancy back in April, and shared the news they were expecting a girl a few months later.

Chyna Mills' birth story

Their bundle of joy, who was born at 1.04pm on Monday 2 October, weighing 8lbs 7oz, is already living up to her name, as well as showing signs of following in her dad's perfectly-choreographed footsteps. 

"She has dancer's feet," Neil tells us, brimming with pride. "And she loves music," adds model and content creator Chyna, 24, who found fame on Love Island last year.

"We've been watching Neil on Strictly from home. I told her: 'Look, it's Daddy on the screen' and at that moment, she did these little smiles with her eyes closed."

Chyna Mills poses with baby Havana in the nursery
Chyna Mills poses with baby Havana in the nursery

Chyna, who grew up in Leeds, where the couple have now planted their roots, gave birth at St Thomas's Hospital in London – and Neil was overcome with awe and emotion as he watched on. 

"It was beautiful. I'm so happy that I saw it all," he says. "I had tears in my eyes. Seeing what Chyna had just gone through, and then Havana coming out and being placed on her chest. Havana had the tiniest cry. It was unbelievable."

Baby Havana's personality

Havana's sweet personality is already coming out. "She's quite chilled but when she wants something, all hell will break loose until she gets it," says Chyna – "So she's just like her mum!" adds Neil with a laugh. 

"It would be amazing if she wants to be a dancer, but she can be whatever she wants to be," Neil tells us, before quipping: "Although, she has to be a Liverpool supporter – that's non-negotiable. She's got a little football kit already."

Chyna Mills posing with baby Havana
Baby Havana has been watching her dad Neil on Strictly

Strictly Come Dancing babies

As Havana grows up, she can look forward to getting to know a whole host of little playmates in the form of her fellow Strictly babies. 

Former pros Janette Manrara and Aljaz Skorjanec's baby daughter Lyra is just a few months older than Havana, and Neil's fellow dancer Gorka Marquez welcomed his second child – son Thiago – with fiancée Gemma Atkinson earlier this year. Both families are based in the north of England, like Neil and Chyna. 

"I was talking to Aljaz and he said he is always dancing around with his baby girl in his arms – and so am I," says Neil. "I said to the pros: 'I want you all to speak to her in your own languages,'" he adds. "Nancy and Carlos can speak to her in Chinese… I would love her to learn as many languages as possible."

"She'll have tons of baby-sitters and dance teachers around her," points out Chyna.

Relive Neil Jones and Chyna Mills' gender reveal:

Neil Jones and Chyna Mills' wedding plans

Still on cloud nine after becoming parents, Neil and Chyna – who got engaged in the stunning rice terraces of Bali earlier this year – have more happy times in store as they look ahead to getting married. Like their engagement, they're planning to tie the knot in sunnier climes.

"I'm going to start researching venues abroad – I told Neil I'll just give him the date," says Chyna, who is taking charge of wedding planning.

Smiling, Neil tells his fiancée: "Well, it can't be any time from September… unless you want our wedding to be a group dance on Strictly!"

To read the full article, pick up the latest issue of HELLO! on sale now. Subscribe to HELLO! to get the magazine delivered free to your door every week or purchase the digital edition online via our Apple or Google apps.

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