Why Claudia Winkleman no longer dresses up for Strictly's Halloween Week

Claudia Winkleman - Strictly Come Dancing 2023. (BBC)
Claudia Winkleman of Strictly Come Dancing. (BBC)

Strictly Come Dancing fans have called out Claudia Winkleman and Tess Daly on social media for not donning Halloween costumes on the show this weekend, but little did they know there's a powerful reason.

Nine years ago, co-presenter Winkleman's young daughter Matilda was involved in a horrifying incident while treat-or-treating that resulted in a three-week hospital stay - suffering severe leg burns after her witch outfit caught fire.

In the time since this nightmare scenario, her mum, who also hosts The Traitors, has become a campaigner for the safety regulations around materials that are used in children's fancy dress costumes.

Read more: Claudia Winkleman says she was asked to cut fringe when she landed Strictly job

"I don't like Halloween because three years ago it turned out our screams were real," Winkleman previously commented during an interview on BBC's Watchdog.

"She 'went up' is the only way I can describe it - it was a spark, and she screamed out for me. It was like those horrific birthday candles that you blow out and they come back. It was really fast, it wasn't fire like I'd seen.

"It was definitely life-changing for me. I was talking to somebody and then I heard her shout and she was on fire. It feels like she was on fire for hours, but the surgeon said it was probably just seconds."

Programme Name: Strictly Come Dancing 2021 - TX: 23/10/2021 - Episode: Strictly Come Dancing - TX5 LIVE SHOW (No. n/a) - Picture Shows: **LIVE SHOW** Claudia Winkleman, Tess Daly - (C) BBC - Photographer: Kieron McCarron
Winkleman and co-star Tess Daly do not dress up for Halloween Week anymore. (BBC/Kieron McCarron) (BBC/Kieron McCarron)

The Winkleman family's neighbour Jamie Poulton was left with second degree burns, too, having attempted to extinguish the blaze with his bare hands.

He said of the event: "It was like a potential horror film in front of me. This material just keeps reigniting and re-burning. And it is sticky, so it melts on the skin. It was horrific."

Read more: Claudia Winkleman claims she has never been to the gym

Meanwhile, on yesterday's (October 28) Halloween episode of Strictly, judges Anton Du Beke, Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse and Craig Revel Horwood all dressed up for the ghoulish occasion.

Du Beke opted for 'mad scientist' while Ballas stepped out as Queen Grimhilde from Snow White and the Seven Dwarves; Mabuse was a spider, and Horwood gave us his best Severus Snape from Harry Potter.

Watch: Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman have signed new 2 year Strictly Come Dancing deal

This article originally appeared on Yahoo TV UK at https://uk.news.yahoo.com/strictly-claudia-winkleman-halloween-costumes-112645956.html