Strictly Come Dancing: All the week 8 action as Layton Williams is back at the top of the scores

Strictly Come Dancing's competition is on fire and everyone has set their eyes on the glitterball trophy. We report as the couples take to the ballroom.

Ellie Leach and Vito Coppola have great fun on the Strictly Come Dancing dance floor (BBC)
Ellie Leach and Vito Coppola have great fun on the Strictly Come Dancing dance floor (BBC) (BBC/Guy Levy)

Strictly Come Dancing stepped up the competition even further in week eight as the couples put in their bid to make it to the Blackpool Tower Ballroom.

We're over halfway in the competition and the judges are getting tougher on the celebrity contestants but the question on everyone's lips is: who will win Strictly?

This week, Layton Williams and Nikita Kuzmin were back at the top of the scores for their incredible Argentine Tango - although Craig Revel Horwood still did not think it was worth getting his 10 paddle out for, leaving them on a total of 39 points.

It was still enough to put them four points clear of last week's leaders Ellie Leach and Vito Coppola, who fuelled the fire of romance rumours with an intimate Rumba.

Meanwhile, the two Angelas are hoping they've done enough to stay in the competition after Rippon found herself in last week's dance off and Scanlon finished last on the previous leaderboard - but scored more highly this time.

Here's Strictly week eight as it happened...

Live coverage is over
  • Katie Archer

    That's a wrap!

    Voting is now open, with a place at Blackpool's Tower Ballroom up for grabs - but who will make it to the home of ballroom?

    Layton and Nikita are back on top of the scores, while Krishnan and Lauren are lagging far behind on 25 points.

    But as ever, the public vote can change everything - keep watching tomorrow night to see who will leave the contest next.

    There's also the traditional Remembrance Sunday performance from the pro cast coming up in Sunday's results show.

    Keep dancing!

  • Katie Archer

    Layton and Nikita stun with their Argentine Tango

    This week's celebrity visit to training came courtesy of comedian Jack Whitehall, who caught up with his old Bad Education co-star Layton Williams and his partner Nikita Kuzmin.

    Their purple-suited Argentine Tango to Loreen's Tattoo was full of all the drama and intensity we've come to expect from the couple and was one of their sharpest dances yet.

    Layton put in his best performance yet

    Motsi and Shirley gave it a standing ovation, while Tess Daly said it gave her goosebumps.

    Motsi told them: "Guys, speechless, that happens once in a lifetime to me. That was epic, it will never be done like that again...that was the bomb."

    Shirley called it "breathtaking" and said: "I'm lost in the Layton magic."

    Anton added he would be happy to pay to see the dance anywhere in the world, while Craig simply said: "A.Maz.Ing."

    Unbelievably, they still didn't score a perfect 40 as Craig insisted on scoring them 9, but the others went for 10s sending them to the top of the leaderboard with 39 points.

  • Katie Archer

    Angela and Carlos make a comeback

    It's always a tough ask coming back into the ballroom after finishing bottom the previous week, but Angela Scanlon was determined to impress.

    Her classic Waltz with Carlos Gu was classy and old school, including a beautiful feathered gown.

    Angela was back on form with a Waltz

    But the pair looked shocked as Craig opened the judging by saying: "Unforgivable gapping, I'm afraid."

    However, Motsi completely disagreed, telling Angela that it was her best dance, while head judge Shirley said she had "some of the best footwork I've ever seen in the Waltz".

    Whether or not Angela and Carlos have saved themselves from the dance off remains to be seen after the judges' split comments.

    Scores went 7, 9, 8, 9 - a total of 33 points.

  • Katie Archer

    Annabel and Johannes channel Shakira

    After last week's emotion-filled dance from Annabel Croft and Johannes Radebe, this Saturday was a change of pace with a Samba to Shakira's Whenever, Wherever.

    The tennis star looked stunning in a gold ruffled dress, throwing herself into the party style of dance.

    Annabel let loose on the Samba

    Anton, notoriously not a Samba fan, admitted the dance in general "makes me feel a bit sick" but had mainly positive things to say to Annabel as he told her "Wow!".

    Craig said: "I was a bit nervous, I thought you would never in a million years be able to pull this off, but you have finally given yourself permission to go wild."

    Shirley added that she thought she "might wet my pants" when Annabel really let go in the routine, which seemed a little more info than the couple wanted to hear...

    The scored an impressive 7, 8, 8 and 8, making 31 points.

  • Katie Archer

    Ellie and Vito's romantic Rumba

    Ellie Leach and Vito Coppola have hit the headlines for more reasons this week than topping last Saturday's leaderboard, as they are rumoured to be dating.

    That made the intimate Rumba an interesting choice for this week, with Vito giving Ellie a stream of kisses on her face at the end of the routine.

    Ellie and Vito brought the romance

    Anton told them: "I really couldn't see anything that went wrong," but typically, Craig didn't agree claiming that it was "a little bit stiff in the body".

    However, he did admit that it was a very difficult routine, saying: "I wouldn't like to have to do that."

    Motsi said: "This is on an extra level. This is quality."

    Ellie and Vito quickly stole the lead with 8, 8, 9 and 9, making 35 points.

  • Katie Archer

    Nigel and Katya show off their Couple's Choice

    Nigel Harman began with an emotional story about losing his parents and what his family mean to him, with all of that emotion carried through into his Couple's Choice with Katya Jones to Bruno Mars' Just The Way You Are.

    Incorporating elements of modern dance, ballet and theatre performance, Nigel looked happy and relaxed tonight.

    Nigel and Katya said they loved their Couple's Choice

    Shirley said it was "mistake free", while Anton told him he had a "leading man quality" and was "stylistically beautiful to watch".

    But Craig said: "It didn't blow me away."

    Which of the judges did you agree with tonight?

    Scores on the doors were 8, 8, 9, 9 - making a total of 34, which is both the highest score so far tonight and Nigel's high score this series.

  • Katie Archer

    Angela Rippon proves she's still one to watch

    She might be Strictly's oldest ever contestant, but Angela Rippon has the flexibility of someone decades younger and this Paso Doble to Madonna's Hung Up gave her and Kai Widdrington the perfect opportunity to show off her skills.

    Angela's leg extension was back on display

    The incredible leg extension was back for this dramatic, sharp routine and the judges loved it.

    Craig told her: "I love that leg extension, I can't see enough of it darling."

    Motsi added: "This Paso's going to Blackpool!"

    Meanwhile, Anton shared: "I got cramp in my left buttock watching that."

    Angela and Kai's scores were all the eights, making another 32 points.

  • Katie Archer

    Bobby and Dianne's dreamy American Smooth

    They're a fan favourite in the contest and Bobby Brazier's American Smooth with Dianne Buswell did not disappoint tonight.

    Anton called it "the nicest thing you've ever done...exquisite" and the audience seemed to agree.

    The couple's matching pale pink outfits and Dianne's floaty dress brought a romantic feel to the ballroom that viewers will have loved.

    Motsi Mabuse called it "amazing", while Shirley Ballas told them that she loved it.

    Bobby overshadowed the comments though by talking about waking himself up practising the moves during the week, intriguingly starting: "The person who I shared a bed with this week..." before Claudia Winkleman sadly cut him off.

    Scores came in at 7, 8, 8 and 9, making a total of 32 points.

  • Katie Archer

    Krishnan and Lauren open the show

    Krishnan Guru-Murthy and Lauren Oakley started the show with a party atmosphere as they brought out their Samba.

    Anton Du Beke congratulated the newsreader on "the joy he brings", but Craig Revel Horwood called it "horribly flat footed".

    However, all the judges agree that Krishnan's personality always shines through.

    They scored 5, 7, 6, 7 making a total of 25 points which could put them in danger...

  • Katie Archer

    Strictly week 8 is here!

    We're back on the dancefloor for another week as the competition picks up pace.

    Will Ellie Leach and Vito Coppola keep their place at the top of the leaderboard? And who's in danger of going home this week?

    Follow along with all the action from the ballroom.

All the Strictly dances and songs revealed

Krishnan Guru-Murthy and Lauren Oakley dancing the Couples Choice (BBC)
Krishnan Guru-Murthy and Lauren Oakley dancing the Couples Choice (BBC) (BBC/Guy Levy)
  • Angela R and Kai: Paso Doble to Hung Up by Madonna

  • Angela S and Carlos: Waltz to With You I’m Born Again by Billy Preston & Syreeta

  • Annabel and Johannes: Samba to Whenever, Wherever by Shakira

  • Bobby and Dianne: American Smooth to Ghost of You by 5 Seconds of Summer

  • Ellie and Vito: Rumba to True Colours by Cyndi Lauper

  • Krishnan and Lauren: Samba to Bamboléo by Gipsy Kings

  • Layton and Nikita: Argentine Tango to Tattoo by Loreen

  • Nigel and Katya: Couple’s Choice to Just The Way You Are by Bruno Mars