Grand finale for ice dancers

This Sunday sees the final programme in the eighth series of Dancing on Ice. For those who have followed it from the start, there have been as usual, a number of interesting and skilful routines performed.

And some of the celebrities - in particular Keith Chegwin and Joe Pasquale- have really added something to the mix. This particular celebrity reality show does encourage those taking part to develop new skills and it is particularly interesting to see which celebrities have really developed their new talent in the course of the series. Many of them say that even after they have been eliminated from the competition, they will keep up their skating!

Philip Schofield (star of last week’s preview The Cube) hosts with Christine Bleakley while Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean are on hand to give advice and sometimes to exhibit their still excellent skating skills. The judging panel on this show – Robin Cousins, Karen Barbour, Ashley Roberts and Jason Gardiner - are a little less prominent than on some similar shows – and are all the better for it. Last week saw the rather shock exit of rugby star Gareth Thomas when he was not physically able to participate in the skateoff. And so three celebrities remain – the Olympian gymnast Beth Tweddle; the Olympian boxer Luke Campbell; and the former Eastenders actor Matt Lapinskas. Skating live on ITV on Sunday night there is a chance that any one of the three might be crowned the winner. While Matt looks like the likely winner at present, anything can happen when the three couples take to the ice. There has been some talk about whether or not the programme itself is skating on thin ice – but hopefully it will ‘live to skate another year.’

IAN K