Actress Welch bows out of ice show

'Loose Women' host and actress Denise Welch bowed out of 'Dancing on Ice' last night joking that she was “knackered” but had “the most wonderful time”.

'Loose Women' host and actress Denise Welch bowed out of 'Dancing on Ice' last night joking that she was “knackered” but had “the most wonderful time”.

Welch, 52, and her partner Matt Evers went head to head with Victoria Cross hero Johnson Beharry in the skate-off of the ITV show last night.

Both contenders put in clean performances, but judges Jason Gardiner, Robin Cousins and former Spice Girl Emma Bunton all opted to save Beharry and his partner Jodeyne Higgins.

As the result was declared, host Phillip Schofield said: “You’ve been such fun, we’ve loved having you here.”

Welch took her defeat with a smile, saying: “Thank you to the best bunch of pals anyone could have had to see us through this, to all my supporters and the public who have kept me in to this stage in the competition.

“I never in a million years thought I would get to this stage. I’m knackered, I’ve had the most wonderful time and I’m going on the tour so you haven’t seen the last of me yet.”

The night saw the remaining six contenders split into two teams and complete two group performances judged by the panel, with the winning three doubling their scores on the leaderboard.

Nickelodeon presenter Laura Hamilton captained Welch and presenter Jeff Brazier to victory, skating to Status Quo’s 'Rockin All Over The World'.

Former 'EastEnders' actor Sam Attwater’s team, comprising Beharry and presenter Chloe Madeley were left relying on audience votes following their routine to the Scissor Sisters’ hit, 'I Don’t Feel Like Dancin’.

Welch initially notched up 15 points, the lowest score of the night, for her slow number to Heart’s 'Alone'.

Cousins said: “You were in your comfort zone, you do look more comfortable with a slow routine.”

Bunton said she found the transitions “messy” but said Welch did bring a control and calmness to the performance.

Gardiner said it was a “marked improvement on last week’s abysmal up-tempo”.

Welch put her head in her hands after her partner, actor Tim Healy, marched up to Gardiner and said: “She’s 52 and she’s got four jobs.”

The judge promptly made an off the cuff comment about his breath.

Hamilton bounced back from last week’s skate-off to achieve the highest score of the series with 28.5 points.

Her dizzying, frenetic routine to The Pointer Sisters’ tune 'I’m So Excited' featured a tricky helicopter lift.

Gardiner said: “You two are unbelievable to watch, the speed, the attack, it was fast and furious.”

Cousins added: “You absolutely nailed everything”.

Madeley also turned in an impressive performance, notching up 26.5 points for her tough routine to Alicia Keys’ hit 'Empire State of Mind'.

Her fleet footwork and speed across the ice won universal praise from the judges.

Cousins said: “Every week you come out here and amaze me. That has to be one of the most difficult routines any female has had in six years on this show.”

Gardiner said the performance was Madeley on her best form, adding that the opening lift sequence was stunning. Bunton labelled it “extraordinary”.

Attwater received a mixed response from the judges, despite a high skating standard, for his routine to Michael Buble’s 'Crazy Love', scoring 25.5 points.

Gardiner praised the “tender moments throughout the routine” adding it was “graceful and elegant”.

But Bunton said: “I didn’t believe your performance tonight” and the “extra sparkle” was missing.

Cousins added he saw him “working at it for the first time in a few weeks”.

Brazier pulled off an up tempo number to 'Hit The Road Jack', despite a fall in the dress rehearsal and was initially awarded 22.5 points.

Bunton said: “I loved seeing another side to the smiley Jeff. Tonight it was strong and passionate.”

Gardiner added the routine played to his strengths, but he needed “more groove in the move”.

Cousins was full of praise, saying he saw an “all-round performance that included everything”.

Beharry proved a hit with the judges, pulling off a tricky lift and scoring 17.5 points for his efforts to 'You Are So Beautiful'.

Cousins labelled it a “terrific performance” which was “relaxed from the beginning”.

Gardiner agreed it was “very smooth” and “quite beautiful, while Bunton declared it ”very sweet“.

Pregnant host Holly Willoughby returned to presenting duties. She missed last week’s show on advice from doctors after suffering a migraine.

The show also featured a performance by Nicole Scherzinger.

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