Strictly Come Dancing 2022 contestants: This year's lineup and start date

The Strictly Come Dancing 2022 contestants are a mixture of beloved British celebrities, including one with plenty of stage experience

Who is in the Strictly 2022 lineup? Plus, start date and time
(Image credit: BBC)

The Strictly Come Dancing 2022 contestants have been announced ahead of the season premiere of its 20th series. The BBC's flagship dancing competition is set to delight with a vibrant collection of the UK's most beloved faces. 

Strictly Come Dancing 2022 will hit screens this September after a nine-month-long break, much to the delight of its devout fanbase. 

This year will see the popular BBC reality series celebrate its 20th anniversary on the air, after an incredible 366 shows and a repertoire of TV awards. 

The first episode of Strictly 2022 was filmed in a pre-record on September 7, with its debut show dropping on BBC One on Friday, September 23. The long build-up has fans desperate to know all the nitty-gritty of what to expect from this year's series, with 'What time is Strictly Come Dancing on tonight?' and 'Who are the Strictly Come Dancing 2022 contestants?' top on the list of everyone's minds. 

Despite its milestone birthday, the format of the upcoming competition will remain largely unchanged from previous seasons. The Strictly judges 2022 lineup will see Shirley Ballas, Craig Revel Horwood, and Motsi Mabuse all reprise their seats on the panel, while Bruno Tolioni has officially been replaced by Anton Du Beke. 

Strictly 2022 judges.

(Image credit: BBC/Strictly Come Dancing)

What time is Strictly Come Dancing 2022 on tonight?

Season 20 of Strictly Come Dancing was initially due to kick off on Saturday, September 17, 2022. 

However, it has since been postponed following the news of Queen Elizabeth II's death. The launch show will now premiere on BBC One at 7 pm on Friday, 23 September, with the first live show hitting screens at the slightly earlier time of 6.45 pm on Saturday, 24 September.

Strictly 2022 professionals

(Image credit: Strictly Come Dancing/BBC)

Who are the Strictly Come Dancing 2022 contestants?

With so much hysteria surrounding the upcoming series, fans are itching to know the identities of the Strictly Come Dancing 2022 contestants. Here's a quick rundown on the fifteen celebrities who have been confirmed to join the cast this year. 

Will Mellor


(Image credit: BBC)

English actor Will Mellor was confirmed as the first of the Strictly Come Dancing 2022 contestants. Best known for his role on Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps, the 46-year-old revealed that he's 'chuffed' to be taking on the enormous 'challenge' after years of watching the glitzy show at home. He went on to credit his beloved mother, Shirley, as his main motivation for signing up. 

"It’s my mum’s favorite show so she’s had it really tough over the last few years so I thought we’ll do this," he said.

The Mancunian TV star, who has also appeared on Coronation Street and Hollyoaks, tragically lost his father, Bill, to cancer in April 2020. Left with a renewed mindset by the grief, he is now determined to "grab life" and "do things that frighten me a little bit." 

Kym Marsh

Kym Marsh

(Image credit: BBC)

Kym Marsh was confirmed as the second Strictly Come Dancing 2022 contestant. Best known for her role as Michelle Connor on Coronation Street, the 46-year-old revealed that she considered joining the dance competition for 'years' but was unable to sign a contract because the timings never worked out.

"I’m a huge fan of the show and can’t believe I’m going to go from watching at home in my pyjamas to actually dancing in front of the judges in a glittery dress, it’s unreal!" she gushed. 

While Kym has never been a professional dancer, she's no stranger to the world of live gigs. The talented vocalist was previously a member of the band Hear'Say, which was created in 2001 on the ITV reality show, Popstars. The group regularly included simple choreography in their performances before their highly-publicized breakup in 2002. 

Richie Anderson

Richie Anderson in Strictly promo teaser

(Image credit: BBC)

Richie Anderson was the third celebrity to join Strictly Come Dancing 2022's contestants, and he's already bursting with excitement. Best known as a presenter on BBC Radio 2’s Breakfast Show, this talented broadcaster called the upcoming challenge a 'dream come true'. 

"I cannot wait to get in those sparkles and sequins and shimmy across the most famous dance floor in the world!" he said shortly after the news was confirmed. 

"Strictly is the ultimate feel-good show, as soon as I hear that iconic theme tune it’s just pure escapism. I’m going to have to cancel my legendary Strictly launch night kitchen party that I throw every year, I’m sure my friends and family will understand. It’s also a massive honor to be part of an all-male dance partnership, it’s so important we have that inclusion on such a huge show.”

Kaye Adams

Kaye Adams in a Strictly promo picture

(Image credit: BBC)

Kaye Adams was the fourth celebrity to join the Strictly Come Dancing 2022 lineup. Best known as a Loose Women panelist, the ITV presenter shared the following hilarious message after the news was confirmed. “I said I wanted to make the last year of my fifties memorable and I can’t think of a better way of doing it than showing the world my two left feet. Pray for me!”

Jayde Adams

Strictly Come Dancing Jayde Adams

(Image credit: BBC)

Comedian and presenter Jayde Adams announced that she'd be joining Strictly on BBC Radio 5 Live. Jayde said of joining the series, "Since I watched the first series in 2004, I feel like every step I’ve taken in my career over the last 11 years was to be on Strictly. I cannot begin to express the emotions I am feeling, this means so much to me and my family."

"I’ve always watched it, apart from a brief hiatus in 2011 as I was relentlessly gigging every weekend (to try and get on Strictly). I’ve been a massive fan of the show for years. I feel like I’m watching myself in a dream and I can’t believe I’ve manifested this. Holding this in has been torture for me!"

Ellie Simmonds

Strictly Come Dancing Ellie Simmonds

(Image credit: BBC)

Paralympic swimmer Ellie Simmonds OBE was the sixth Strictly sign up announced, it was revealed that she'll be joining the lineup on Sunday August 7.

Ellie, who is a gold medal-winning Paralympic swimmer, told the BBC, "Oh my gosh!! I’m literally bursting with excitement!! It's been soooo hard keeping this secret as I've wanted to tell everyone I'm going on Strictly Come Dancing!!"

"I'm a tad nervous too, well more than a tad… I'm absolutely petrified! To be asked to be part of the Strictly family is just so exciting and I cannot wait, it's going to so much fun. I'm counting down the minutes until it starts; learning to dance, meeting my partner and everyone else involved in the show."

Tyler West

Strictly Come Dancing

(Image credit: BBC)

Tyler West was the seventh celebrity announced to be joining the Strictly lineup. Tyler is a KISS FM radio host and DJ and it was announced that he was joining the competition on Monday, August 8, 2022. 

Tyler West said in a statement to the BBC, "I am SO gassed to be joining the Strictly family! As I started writing this I already got cramp. It’s going to be one crazy incredible journey which will no doubt be SO far outside my comfort zone. It’s a show that means so much to me and my family and I can’t wait to seriously shake a leg on that shiny dance floor… with a side of sequins."

Matt Goss

Matt Goss

(Image credit: BBC)

On Monday, August 8, it was announced that singer-songwriter Matt Goss would be the eighth celebrity contestant joining the brand new series of Strictly Come Dancing. 

Matt Goss is a singer-songwriter, musician, and actor who is best known as the frontman of BROS, whose debut 1988 album Push went platinum seven times and remained on the charts for 54 weeks.

“I’m extremely nervous and excited, but I’m optimistic because I’m very supple from the knees down,” said Matt Goss about this upcoming challenge.

Ellie Taylor

Ellie Taylor

(Image credit: BBC)

On August 9, English stand-up comedian Ellie Taylor was announced as the ninth celebrity to join Strictly Come Dancing 2022. Best known for her role as Flo 'Sassy' Collins in Netflix's comedy series, Ted Lasso, and as co-host on The Great Pottery Throwdown, the 38-year-old is more than ready for the glitz and glamor of the upcoming challenge. 

“Well, cover me in fake tan and roll me in sequins!" she said. "I've watched the show for years so to be able to take to the dance floor is a dream come true, for both me and mum who is a Strictly super fan! At the moment I'm focusing on the excitement and glitter and choosing to ignore the fact that I have the dancing ability of a newly born giraffe. Bring it on!"

Molly Rainford

Strictly Come Dancing 2022

(Image credit: BBC)

Singer and actress Molly Rainford was the tenth celebrity contestant confirmed for Strictly Come Dancing 2022. Molly burst onto TV screens at the age of eleven in 2012, when she became the youngest ever finalist of Britain’s Got Talent. Choosing to continue her studies after BGT, Simon Cowell and Sony Music honored Molly with their first-ever drama school scholarship at the internationally renowned Sylvia Young Theatre School. Since graduating, Molly is currently starring in the lead role as an intergalactic pop superstar in the hit CBBC show Nova Jones.

On the huge honor, 21-year-old Molly said, “I'm so excited to be part of Strictly Come Dancing, I've watched it for years and can't wait to meet the pros and the others taking part! I can't wait to learn the moves and get dancing!”

Tony Adams MBE

Strictly Come Dancing 2022 contestants: Tony Adams MBE

(Image credit: BBC)

Tony Adams MBE is a former English football player and manager. The retired center-back’s football career spanned over 22 years, playing for both Arsenal and England. Having captained both, he's regarded as one of Arsenal’s greatest ever players and one of the all-time greats of English football. 

He won 66 caps for England, appeared at four major tournaments and had 10 major trophy wins whilst is still the only player in English football history to captain a team to three top-flight titles over three different decades. As captain of England, he famously led the national team to the Euro 96 final.

Father of six Tony, who's happily married to wife Poppy, went into coaching and management after he hung up his football boots. His latest venture, SIX MHS, delivers Mental Health and Addictions services to non-sportspeople and non-sports organizations. Tony is also patron of four other additional charities, NACOA, Forward Trust, Saving Faces, and School Home Support and has started the charity, 6 Addiction, for people that can’t afford private mental health services.

Of his exciting news, Tony said, “To say I’m excited is an understatement - the lure of the sequins and the call of the salsa has me swapping my battered old football boots for a set of Strictly soft shoes. Am absolutely thrilled to be giving it my all on this year’s 20th anniversary of Strictly Come Dancing. I can’t wait to meet my partner - god help her - and start the dancing.”

Fleur East

Strictly Come Dancing 2022 contestants: Fleur East.

(Image credit: BBC)

Fleur East was the twelfth of the Strictly Come Dancing 2022 contestants confirmed by the BBC. Fleur found fame after coming runner-up in season 11 of The X Factor. Since then, the much-loved star has been a regular face in the world of music and broadcasting. 

As a singer, she has released two albums, with European chart hit single Sax reaching number three on the UK singles chart. After appearing on I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here in 2018 she became the host of the Hits Radio Breakfast show which she hosts every weekday. She has also appeared as a presenter on the last three series of Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway and a host of ITV gameshow The Void.

Discussing her upcoming gig, she said, “I’m equally nervous and thrilled to be part of this year’s Strictly lineup. I’m excited to learn new skills and I want to soak up every moment of this magical experience."

Although she adds what an honor it is to appear on the show she admitted it's bittersweet as she used to watch the show with her father, who sadly passed away. "Unfortunately my Dad is no longer with us but I know he will be watching over the ballroom in spirit," she said. "I’m doing this to make him and my family proud and can’t wait to get my dancing shoes on!"

Hamza Yassin

Strictly Come Dancing 2022 contestants: Hamza Yassin

(Image credit: BBC)

Hamza Yassin is a wildlife cameraman and presenter, best known as one of the presenters of BBC’s Animal Park and as a guest presenter on BBC’s Countryfile where he shares his vast knowledge and camera skills. Those familiar with children's TV CBeebies might recognize him as Ranger Hamza, presenting the hit live-action show Let’s Go For A Walk and the new series Ranger Hamza’s Eco Quest, which is hitting screens later this month.

Hamza moved to the Scottish Highlands when he was younger to follow his dream of filming Scottish wildlife and becoming a wildlife cameraman and has lived there ever since. Recently, Hamza fronted Channel 4 documentary Scotland: My Life in the Wild and Scotland: Escape to the Wilderness, in which he guided celebrity companions on journeys through western and eastern Scotland and the Highlands.  In his spare time, Hamza competes in the Highland Games and enjoys riding the country roads on his motorbike. 

On his exciting news, Hamza told the BBC, “I am absolutely over the moon to be joining Strictly 2022.  Never in a million years did I think I’d be on such a cool show.  I’ve been watching it for years and I can’t believe I’ll actually be there dancing live in front of the British public. My dance skills are currently at the level of ‘1970’s disco vibe’ but I’m ready to work hard and will be shaking it every time I get the chance – shake it ‘til you make it!”

James Bye

James Bye

(Image credit: BBC)

James Bye is an English actor best known for his role as Martin Fowler in EastEnders. James also worked on The Great Train Robbery and the Hooligan Factory

Talking about his excitement about joining the series, James said, “I’m not known for my shimmy or my twinkle toes - in fact my kids regularly laugh at my dad dancing but it’s an honor to be asked and I’m going to give it my best shot. There are some huge dance shoes to fill and it’s truly exciting to follow in the footsteps of some amazing EastEnders talent. I’d love to do everyone proud.”

Helen Skelton

Helen Skelton

(Image credit: BBC)

Speaking about her excitement about joining the Strictly cast Helen said, “I’m really excited to get stuck into a fun adventure. My family and friends have always loved the show and can’t wait for me to get started.”

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.