Dancer Darcy Bussell is to join the Strictly Come Dancing judging panel when the show returns this autumn, it has been confirmed.
The former Principal Dancer at the Royal Ballet will replace singer Alesha Dixon, who is now appearing on rival reality show, Britain’s Got Talent.
Bussell, who previously appeared on the programme as a guest judge in 2009, will sit alongside long-standing judges Bruno Tonioli, Len Goodman and Craig Revel Horwood.
Of her new role, Darcy told the BBC:
“I had such a lovely experience in 2009 when I was a guest judge, that coming on board now feels very natural. Strictly combines quality dance and great entertainment, which is such a positive for everybody involved.
“I am very excited and really looking forward to being part of the Strictly team.”
Station controller Danny Cohen described Strictly as the “jewel in BBC One’s crown” and said that there was “no-one better” to join the panel.
Alesha Dixon joined Strictly in 2009, replacing Arlene Phillips; a move that sparked controversy among audiences.
She announced her departure from the show in January 2012, after being offered a judging role on ITV1′s Britain’s Got Talent.
Strictly Come Dancing returns to our screens later this year.