It doesn’t matter if you’re a TV presenter, a cricketer, a soap star or a singer, all you need is some determination and a love of all things sparkly if you want to join the list of Strictly Come Dancing winners. This year, Rose Ayling-Ellis was the favorite to win the competition, and she did just that after wowing week after week on the dancefloor with her dance partner Giovanni Pernice.
Although, if we’re honest, it also helps if you don’t have two left feet… maybe if you really can’t dance you’d be better off joining the list of I’m A Celebrity winners, instead!
While most of the contestants sign up for the show purely for the joy that being on Strictly brings, rather than to further their career, we’ve done some digging to find out what happens to winners after the glitter’s worn off and the fake tan’s faded…
Here’s a complete list of all the ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ winners…
Rose Ayling-Ellis – 2021
Strictly Come Dancing 2021 will go down in Strictly history as having some of the highest scorning dances on the show… and the final saw EastEnders star Rose and her professional partner Giovani take on John and Johannes after AJ and Kai were forced to bow out of the show after AJ sustained a foot injury. In the end, it was Rose and Giovanni who won the glitterball trophy after wowing the nation with their amazing couple’s choice dance, which will go down in Strictly history for raising awareness for the deaf community after featuring a pause in the music. The groundbreaking pair have gone from strength to strength each week, and it was their incredible friendship and teamwork that won them the Strictly 2021 crown.
Bill Bailey – 2020
Last year’s Strictly saw some amazing dancers show off their fancy footwork as always, but it was comedian Bill Bailey, EastEnders star Maisie Smith, pop star HRVY and Made In Chelsea favourite Jamie Laing who made it to the final.
However, there can only be one winner and while everyone danced their socks off, it was Bill and his dance partner Oti Mabuse who lifted that coveted glitter ball trophy. Now he’s done with dancing (for now!), he’s back doing comedy, music, drawing, and a whole host of other creative things.
Kelvin Fletcher – 2019
He might have been a last-minute addition to the series, but former Emmerdale star Kelvin certainly made up for any lost time by proving he was a force to be reckoned with on the dance floor.
Kelvin and his dance partner Oti Mabuse wowed the judges week after week with their amazing dances, and it seemed there was nothing that Kelvin couldn’t do when it came to fancy footwork.
They were the favourites to lift the glitterball trophy and they did just that in December 2019. So that was two victories for Oti Mabuse!
Stacey Dooley – 2018
Stacey Dooley and her dance partner Kevin Clifton beat favourite Joe Sugg to be crowned the Strictly Come Dancing champions in 2018.
The pair had stiff competition in the final. Not only did Joe give them a run for their money, but so did Ashley Roberts and Faye Tozer who were also both strong contenders for the trophy.
Joe McFadden – 2017
2017 glitter ball champion Joe was partnered with Katya Jones, beating former Emmerdale actress Gemma Atkinson and Debbie McGee to be crowned champion.
The former Holby City actor then went on to tread the boards in theatre production The House on Cold Hill, before recently returning to Holby for a guest stint.
Ore Oduba – 2016
After being partnered with professional dancer Joanne Clifton, television and radio presenter Ore made it to the Strictly final, were he had to fight stiff competition like Louise Redknapp and ex Hollyoaks star Danny Mac to win the glitterball trophy.
He has since gone back to presenting, appearing on shows like And They’re Off on BBC1, Hardball and he even covered the royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.
Jay McGuiness – 2015
The Wanted boy band member took a real journey throughout his time on Strictly, starting off as the underdog and quickly flourishing into the best dancer of the series.
He quickstepped his way to victory with partner Aliona Vilani before swapping Strictly for a musical show called Big The Musical. He also won Celebrity Haunted.
Caroline Flack – 2014
Caroline and partner Pasha Kovalev left judges speechless with their three perfect scores of 40 in the final in 2014.
After enjoying her time on Strictly, Caroline then went back to presenting Saturday night TV where she hosted The X Factor alongside Olly Murs, before launching a successful career presenting ITV2 reality show Love Island before sadly passing away in 2020.
Abbey Clancy – 2013
Abbey went from being known as a model and football WAG to becoming one of Strictly’s most popular dancers during her stint on the show in 2013 with partner Aljaz Skorjanec.
After her time in the competition, she went back to Britain’s Next Top Model as a host, the show that had launched her career nine years earlier. She’s now a mum with a successful modelling career.
Louis Smith – 2012
Gymnast Louis won Strictly with professional partner Flavia Cacace shortly after competing in London’s Olympic Games where he won a silver medal.
After the dance show he went back to competing and trained for the Rio Olympics in 2016 where he won another silver medal for the pommel horse.
Harry Judd – 2011
Harry tangoed his way to victory with partner Aliona Vilani in 2011 after scoring perfect 10s from the judges.
Since his time on the show he has married his long-term partner Izzy and become a dad. He has also returned to his boyband roots and enjoyed success in the music industry once again when McFly joined forces with Busted, creating supergroup McBusted.
Kara Tointon – 2010
A year after leaving her role on EastEnders, Kara joined the world of Strictly with partner Artem Chingvintsev. The actress has enjoyed a jam-packed career since lifting the glitter ball trophy with successes on both stage and television.
Just some of her most notable roles include Eliza Doolittle in the West End production of Pygmalion, Rosalie in ITV’s Sunday night drama Mr Selfridge and she has also been treading the boards in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night.
Chris Hollins – 2009
BBC presenter Chris Hollins was the surprise winner of 2009 as he danced his way to victory with partner Ola Jordan.
After the show he returned to his job at the BBC, and has enjoyed various presenting jobs including The One Show, Watchdog, Cash In The Attic, and Secret Britain.
Tom Chambers – 2008
Ever since winning Strictly with partner Camilla Dallerup, Holby City and Casualty star Tom has definitely got a taste for performing on the dance floor.
Not only has he returned for Strictly Christmas specials, but he’s made a career out of dancing in Top Hat, which toured the UK before finishing with a run in London’s West End.
Alesha Dixon – 2007
After being partnered with Matthew Cutler, Alesha famously went from being a contestant on the show to sitting on the judges panel just two series later after taking over from former judge Arlene Phillips.
But her post-Strictly success doesn’t end there. Alesha then jumped ship to ITV and joined the judging panel of Britain’s Got Talent in 2012 where she has been working ever since.
Mark Ramprakash – 2006
Another cricketer to catch the big prize was Mark Ramprakash, who was teamed up with professional dancer Karen Hardy.
Mark also went back to his cricket career after the show, and retired from the sport in 2012. He has since been working as the batting coach for the England cricket team.
Darren Gough – 2005
Darren, who was partnered with Lilia Kopylova, wasn’t the judges favourite to win after they put him in last place during the final behind Zoe Ball and Colin Jackson. But the voting public disagreed and crowned him winner.
Darren went back to his cricket career after winning the show, and retired in 2008. He then went on to become the face of supermarket chain Costcutter, regularly appearing in their TV adverts, and even became a brand ambassador of Collier’s Cheddar in 2010, making celebrity appearances at the International Cheese Awards.
Jill Halfpenny – 2004
After the success of the first series, the BBC decided to air a second series of Strictly in the autumn of the same year, which is now the regular slot for the annual show.
Jill, who danced with Darren Bennett, went down in Strictly history as the first person to be awarded a perfect 40 score from the judges. The former EastEnders actress has enjoyed a hugely successful TV career since Strictly with roles in shows like Three Girls, Ordinary Lies, In the Club, and Waterloo Road.
Natasha Kaplinsky – 2004
The first ever series of Strictly hit our screens in spring 2004 and ran between May and July before moving to its famous autumn slot as we now know it.
Natasha, who was partnered with Brendan Cole, was a well-known BBC newsreader, and since doing Strictly she has had two children and now has a successful career doing TV presenting work for ITV.