If romance is in the air, Ellie and Bobby seem to be doing a good job at keeping it under wraps from their co-stars (Picture: Rex)
The Coronation Street actress, 22, and EastEnders star, 20, are said to have fallen for the infamous Strictly curse, though just weeks ago fans were convinced Ellie was in a relationship with Vito Coppola, who she lifted the glitterball trophy with.
Ellie and Bobby, who was a Strictly finalist with partner Dianne Buswell, are now said to have kissed and been on secret dates.
‘They’ve been spending nearly all their free time together before and after performances. They’ve been having their meals together, and flirting increasingly openly,’ a source told The Sun.
However, Craig, who is also on tour as well as third finalist Layton Williams, had no idea the romance was blossoming, and heard of it for the first time when asked by Metro.co.uk about the rumours.
He told us: ‘Ellie and Bobby?! No, I didn’t [see that coming], I didn’t even know about that, but there you go.’
Ellie lifted the glitterball trophy with pro partner Vito Coppola (Picture: PA)
Bobby made it to the final with Dianne Buswell (Picture: PA)
He added that nothing surprises him when it comes to Strictly romances, as the notorious curse has swirled over the past 20 years.
‘Nothing surprises me,’ he said. ‘I didn’t know about that, that’s news to me darling!’
Craig went on: ‘Romance blossoms, if there’s two single people then fine let them do whatever they want, I say.
‘I encourage love, peace and happiness.’
He elsewhere spoke about how ’emotional’ the tour has been, and how it’s brought the stars closer together.
He shared: ‘We’ve had amazing reviews this year, and it just goes from strength to strength.
‘That’s largely due to the calibre of celebrity of course that we had last year on the show and the amazing pro dancers who do a fantastic job.
Ellie Leach and Bobby Brazier are said to have sparked a romance while on tour (Picture: Instagram / Ellie Leach)
Strictly judge Craig Revel Horwood had no idea of the rumoured romance (Picture: BBC)
‘So it’s just great fun to be back together again and of course this will be the celebs’ final hurrah with Strictly, because after this their journey ends.
‘Everyone gets quite sad about that because you have something to look forward to even though the TV show has finished, there’s just a little bit more Strictly left in everyone.
‘So it is quite the sad occasion when we finish at the O2 but it’s also equally brilliant to be able to celebrate the Strictly Come Dancing TV show in a big format.’
Craig went on to explain how not only the celebrities and dancers grow closer together on tour, but the judges get to share a new bond with them.
During the TV show, he admitted, the judges are kept quite separate from the stars, and may only ‘brush past each other in a corridor’.
‘There’s no afterparty or after bar, like there used to be before Covid, so you don’t get to mix or mingle or get to know them at all.
Craig revealed the judges and stars come closer together during the tour (Picture: David Fisher/Shutterstock)
‘So for us it’s like being a family, coming together and making new friends, and having a great time.’
Reminiscing on the recent series of Strictly, Craig recalled Layton’s ‘incredible’ Paso Doble, calling all the finalists ‘fantastic entertainment’ and highlighting how Ellie ‘came from nothing and worked her way up, which was incredible.’
Looking ahead to the next series of the Saturday night competition, Craig elsewhere revealed Britain’s Got Talent judge Simon Cowell is at the top of his list.
‘I think he would be one of the best bookings we could ever get! But will he do it? I doubt it very much.’
On his ‘one day off’ during the Strictly tour, Craig was involved in National Lottery’s Big Night of Musicals, which airs on Saturday on BBC One after taking place on Monday.
The choreographer and dancer, 59, stars in the Wizard of Oz and gifted a man who worked in community theatre for 50 years with his own theatre chair.
Craig took a day off from the tour for The National Lottery’s Big Night of Musicals (Picture: Anthony Devlin/Getty Images for the National Lottery)
Speaking about the special event, Craig said: ‘The night is about celebrating everything musical theatre, and it’s not very often that all the musicals from the West End and touring productions all come to one place together, and entertain a crowd of 12,000, let alone the millions of people that will see it on the television.
‘It’s just a brilliant night to see everyone, see the talent that’s out there, and support the National Lottery in that way, because, of course, they award more than £517million to the arts, and that’s why I support it.
‘There were so many times when we were in lockdown as well that the lottery supported everyone in pantomime, which was brilliant, so when people were too nervous to go into the theatre they really made everything happen.
‘For me, it was a great night of seeing not just friends, and people I knew in the business, but also people I hadn’t had the opportunity to meet before.’
The National Lottery’s Big Night of Musicals will air at 7:50pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer on January 27, as well as on BBC Radio 2 and BBC Sounds on January 28.
Strictly Come Dancing is available to watch on BBC iPlayer.
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