Craig Revel Horwood will quit 'Strictly' if he's banned from making digs at contestants

Katie Archer

Craig Revel Horwood has said he will quit judging Strictly Come Dancing if he’s expected to rein in his trademark catty comments.

Before the new series even began, the panel’s grumpiest judge was forced to make a public apology to Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton after an ill-received joke during the pre-recorded launch show that was edited out.

Read more: Craig Revel Horwood ‘sorry’ for Stacey Dooley joke

Now Revel Horwood has told The Sun that he has no intention of toning down his spiky sense of humour, and that if he’s ever made to censor himself he will bow out of the show.

The 54-year-old said: “Every year I get told to tone it down and I don’t listen. Of course I won’t be toning it down this year.

“I’m going to be just like I’ve been for 16 years. I’m not changing for anyone, if that’s the case I’d rather not judge it.

“It will never work, darling, I’ve got too much of a big mouth.”

Revel Horwood’s now-infamous joke was made in front of Dooley and Clifton, now a couple, who won the 2018 series.

Read more: Craig Revel Horwood says Nicole Scherzinger is his dream Strictly judge

He told the Strictly 2019 stars during recording for the launch show: “Stacey was dragged up from the dance gutter.

“Of course, if you sleep with your dance partner that helps.”

He later publicly apologised, saying: “I’m deeply sorry for the offence caused to Kevin and Stacey and everyone who works on the show.

“I recognise that what I said was hurtful, cruel and incredibly disrespectful. It was a huge error of judgment that I very much regret.”

But despite being in his 17th series of the show, Revel Horwood told The Sun that he’d never allowed himself to think that he was indispensable to Strictly’s success.

Read more: Motsi Mabuse responds to BBC box-ticking allegations

He said: “It is just a Saturday job, Monday to Friday I choreograph and dance, but Strictly is a very small part of it.

“We are all dispensable, I expect they would replace me with someone else. It’s not me who has gone onto 56 countries worldwide, it’s the show and the format.”