Arlene Phillips believes Anton Du Beke was always destined to be on the 'Strictly Come Dancing' judging panel.

Arlene Phillips

Arlene Phillips

The 55-year-old pro dancer is replacing Bruno Tonioli on the next series of the show, and fellow former 'Strictly' panellist Arlene always knew Anton was “bound to be a judge” eventually.

The 78-year-old choreographer told the Daily Mirror newspaper: “I love it. He was bound to be a judge at some point.”

Bruno is judging US show 'Dancing With the Stars' and unable to fly back and forth owing to the coronavirus pandemic, so Anton will take his place.

But Arlene doesn’t think it’s necessarily the last time Bruno will be on the UK judging panel.

She said: “I know Bruno stepped aside for the moment and he could well be back, who knows?

"I think it’s nice seeing Anton there in his chair.”

And following politician Ed Ball’s stint on the show in 2016, Arlene would like nothing more than to see another politician on the show this time around, ideally former Labour leader Ed Miliband.

She added: “It would be nice to have another Ed Balls!

"I love it when they get politicians on.

"Maybe Ed [Miliband] could do it this year.”

After it was previously revealed Anton will take Bruno's place for the upcoming series, fellow panellist Craig Revel Horwood, said: "He may come back next year, who knows, but I'm so delighted to welcome Anton to the panel."

Anton has danced on the show with the likes of 'Loose Women' star Ruth Langsford, and he finished runner-up in 2019 with 'EastEnders' actress Emma Barton.

Fellow pro dancer Amy Dowden previously admitted how happy she was to see Anton on the panel.

Amy said: "I’m so excited. I thought he was brilliant when he filled in last year, because he had a few weeks where he replaced Motsi (Mabuse).

"I think it's quite nice for us pros because he knows it from our perspective as well and what the celebrity is going through. So I think for us pros that's quite refreshing.

"He obviously knows his knowledge.

"He lives and breathes 'Strictly'.

"So yeah, I'm really excited."