STRICTLY judge Craig Revel Horwood usually strikes fear into competitors as he reveals his withering comments and scores on the show.
But now Mr Nasty is about to discover something equally chilling as the contest gets ready to stage its Halloween special.
It turns out the dance competition’s catty panellist is getting married to fiancé Jonathan Myring in one of the most haunted parts of the country.
Craig has chosen to tie the knot in a venue that dates back to the 1800s near Rutland Water.
But he probably doesn’t realise the area is known for its spectres and has been a witchcraft hotspot for centuries.
A TV insider said: “This will no doubt come as a surprise to Craig, who probably didn’t pick the location for its supernatural history, more its natural beauty.
“Thankfully, he also has a great sense of humour so won’t see it as a hurdle to getting married there, unless he’s been hiding a deeply superstitious streak.”
The church where Craig is having his big day is surrounded by an area once known as Witches Heath, believed to be a meeting place for sorceresses.
‘BIG AND FUN'
Local history books are also filled with tales of grisly murders, ghost sightings and the spooky story of a spring with peculiar powers that became a shrine.
The stories are unlikely to put off horticulturalist Jonathan and Craig, who met in 2018 through a pal and got engaged last year.
Jonathan proposed during a holiday at a national park in Tasmania — and naturally the fabulous couple celebrated with champagne.
They won’t have the ceremony until next year to make sure their plans are not hit by any Covid restrictions.
Craig said: “I want it to be big and fun, not a Covid wedding with five people there.”
I’ve a feeling there will be quite a presence when they make their vows at that place.
MOVES TO MONSTER SOUNDS
IT’S set to be a spine-tingling Saturday night.
Here are the couples’ dances and what tracks they have chosen.
AJ and Kai: Viennese waltz, Dangerous Woman.
Judi and Graziano: Cha cha cha, Physical.
Rose and Giovanni: Tango, Shivers.
Sara and Aljaz: Couple’s choice, Queen Of The Night.
Tilly and NikitaI Cha cha cha, Spooky.
Adam and Katya: Viennese waltz, Moonlight Sonata.
Dan and Nadiya: Jive, Rock Lobster.
John and Johannes: Quickstep, Bad Moon Rising.
Rhys and Nancy: Paso doble, The Eve Of The War.
Tom and Amy: Tango, Highway To Hell.
CLAWS? HE CAN’T WHAITE!
JOHN WHAITE won’t struggle to get in the mood for the spooktacular – because the former Bake Off winner is a huge fan of Halloween.
He has become well known back home in Wigan for putting on mega Jonathan Ross-style parties.
Half the town turns out for the ghoulish bashes – and John always goes all-out with his costume.
One year he dressed up as Edward Scissorhands and used duct tape to attach the fantasy movie character’s famous long blade claws to his hands.
The night ended with his mum having to get slicing herself – to cut him out of the costume.
John and his Strictly partner Johannes Radebe will be putting on werewolf suits for their dance.
At least John is used to wearing claws.
IT has been two years since Strictly had its Halloween special, after Covid delayed the series start in 2020.
The BBC was only able to hold nine live shows instead of 13, so chose to include just the musical and movie nights.
Last year, Halloween fell on the second week – too early for a themed special.
SCARY CELEB STYLE
STRICTLY celebs already have a lot of experience at dressing up in scary outfits – even if some from previous bashes have not been a success.
Baker John Whaite did a slightly dodgy Dracula but chef Tilly Ramsay served up a decent witch.
Presenter AJ Odudu showed the greatest imagination, once stepping out for a Halloween party as a killer nurse.
She’ll look even more terrifying on Saturday’s show as Medusa.
HALLOWEEN week is always a high point in the Strictly calendar – but pro dancer Nancy Xu is not a fan.
Teasing their performance this weekend, children’s TV host Rhys Stephenson said: “It’s going to be intense stares, high-octane kicks and screams. Nancy hates it.
"She hates being scared – she hates pranks."
The pair performed the American smooth on Saturday and ended up in the dance-off.
They were saved by the judges – but maybe Nancy would now have preferred otherwise.
VILLAINS OF THE PIECE
STRICTLY bosses have pulled out all the stops for Saturday night.
The special will include a group number featuring all the show’s professional dancers performing as famous villains.
Johannes Radebe is being transformed into Jafar, the evil nemesis from Aladdin.
Jowita Przystal will become comic book bad girl Harley Quinn and Nikita Kuzmin will turn into The Joker from Batman.
Also look out for the pro dancers taking on Star Wars character Darth Vader and Pennywise the clown from the Stephen King movie It.
The performers will be dancing to Harry Styles track Treat People With Kindness.
I wonder if anyone will have the nerve to appear as Strictly villain Craig?
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