Former Emmerdale actor Kelvin Fletcher, who was only drafted into Strictly Come Dancing as a last-minute replacement, has been voted this year’s winner.
Kelvin and professional partner Oti Mabuse lifted this year’s glitterball trophy on BBC One on Saturday.
They triumphed over Karim Zeroual and Amy Dowden; and Emma Barton and Anton Du Beke after topping a public vote.
Kelvin said: “I am absolutely speechless. I did not expect that, it’s just been such a privilege to be here.”
The couples performed three dances in Saturday’s final – a judges’ pick dance, their own favourite routine from the series and a new showdance.
Although Kelvin and Oti came second on the judges’ scoring, only the public vote counted in the final.
Some fans complained they were unable to vote online, with many saying they were being told they had reached their “maximum number of votes allowed” despite not having yet cast a vote.
The BBC reminded people having difficulties that they could vote by phone.
Kelvin was only called up after Made In Chelsea star Jamie Laing injured his foot while recording the launch show – and the fellow TV star tweeted his congratulations:
Kelvin, who broke down in tears after his victory, said: “I think this show represents everything that is amazing with this country. I think the people personify what is great and it’s just been an absolute privilege.”
In a post on Twitter, he said he was “humbled, elated, honoured”, adding: “Team #Floti did it!”
Kelvin and Oti began their routines with a sensual rumba to Ain’t No Sunshine by Bill Withers for which they scored 39 points, followed by a perfect-score showdance to Shout by The Isley Brothers.
Judge Bruno Tonioli said their showdance was “almost like watching 13 weeks of all the best of Strictly Come Dancing condensed into one dance” and Oti’s sister and fellow judge Motsi Mabuse, who joined the panel this year, said: “I have no words…”
For their final dance, they revisited their samba to La Vida Es Un Carnaval by Celia Cruz, which they performed in week one.
Judge Shirley Ballas said to Kelvin: “Which part of that body doesn’t move? Fantastic, congratulations, I have no words, you’ve left me speechless.” He scored 39 for the second time of the night.
The Strictly win will give a huge boost to Kelvin, three years after he left his role as Andy Sugden in the long-running ITV soap, which he had played for two decades.
It is also the first time Oti has lifted the trophy. Speaking through tears, she said: “I’ve been on this show for five years and I have never ever met any celeb who gives his heart, his soul…
“If something is not working we stay in training and rehearse, not because he wanted to win but because he genuinely, genuinely loves dancing, and for me that is the best gift and the best ending to my year, so thank you.”
CBBC presenter Karim and his partner Amy performed the quickstep to Mr Pinstripe Suit – and were the only pair to get a perfect score for their first dance.
Their showdance to A Million Dreams from The Greatest Showman landed them 39 points and they scored a second perfect 40 for their jive to You Can’t Stop The Beat from Hairspray.
Emma and Anton opened with the Charleston to Thoroughly Modern Millie, which they first performed on musicals’ week.
Tonioli told Emma, who is best-known for playing Honey Mitchell in BBC show EastEnders, that she was his “favourite flapper ever”.
But the pair missed out on a perfect score by one point after judge Craig Revel Horwood pulled them up on a “sync issue”.
Their showdance to Let Yourself Go by Irving Berlin won them 38 points and their final dance – the Viennese waltz to the musical song Send In The Clowns – netted them 39.
Saturday night was the first time Anton had reached the final since the show’s first series in 2004.
After their final performance, Emma praised her dance partner: “Anton, the king of ballroom, thank you for allowing me to be your Queen for the last three months.”
TV critic Emma Bullimore said lots of fans thought “this was Anton’s moment” to lift the glitterball “but it wasn’t to be”.
Commenting on newspaper reports that he might quit the show, she said: “He’s going to have to call it at some point – there’s no getting round it, he is much older than the other dancers. But I wouldn’t be surprised if he carries on for a bit.”