'Strictly Come Dancing' pro AJ Pritchard quits after 4 years

Yahoo Celebrity UK
AJ Pritchard attends the World Premiere of 'Bohemian Rhapsody' at SSE Arena Wembley on October 23, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Jeff Spicer/Jeff Spicer/Getty Images for Twentieth Century Fox )
AJ Pritchard attends the World Premiere of 'Bohemian Rhapsody' at SSE Arena Wembley on October 23, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Jeff Spicer/Jeff Spicer/Getty Images for Twentieth Century Fox )

AJ Pritchard has announced he is leaving Strictly Come Dancing after four years on the BBC programme.

The 24-year-old professional dancer revealed his decision on social media on Thursday afternoon as he told fan he had "some news".

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An accompanying statement read: "After four years on Strictly Come Dancing, AJ has decided the time is right to leave the show and follow his dreams to explore opportunities in the presenting world alongside his brother Curtis.

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"AJ would like to thank the team at Strictly and everyone at the BBC for giving him such a brilliant opportunity.

"AJ would also like to send his love and gratitude to all who have followed and supported his career. He is excited for you all to join him on the next chapter in his journey."

AJ Pritchard and Saffron Barker attending a Photocall ahead of the first night of the Strictly Come Dancing Live Tour 2020 at Arena Birmingham. (Brett Cove / Echoes Wire/ Barcroft Media via Getty Images)
AJ Pritchard and Saffron Barker attending a Photocall ahead of the first night of the Strictly Come Dancing Live Tour 2020 at Arena Birmingham. (Brett Cove / Echoes Wire/ Barcroft Media via Getty Images)

The BBC said: ‘We would like to thanks AJ for four fantastic years on Strictly Come Dancing. ‘He is a brilliant dancer who reached three semi-finals during his time on the show.

"He will be missed by fans and the Strictly family. We wish him all the best for the future."

He had already been confirmed as one of the professionals for the 2020 edition of the programme.

AJ Pritchard and Curtis Pritchard attend BBC Radio 1's Teen Awards 2019 on November 24, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Jo Hale/Redferns)
AJ Pritchard and Curtis Pritchard attend BBC Radio 1's Teen Awards 2019 on November 24, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Jo Hale/Redferns)

During his time on the contest, Pritchard has been partnered with gymnast Claudia Fragapane, singer and presenter Mollie King, Paralympian Lauren Steadman.

Most recently he was partnered with YouTube star Saffron Barker with the pair coming sixth in the 2019 competition.

Recently, he had to cancel dates on his dancing tour with his brother, Love Island star Curtis, due to the coronavirus pandemic after mass gatherings were shut down.

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