Full credit to Ian Wylie, London-based freelance journalist with a particular interest and acute knowledge of all-things television, for the brilliant headline, photos and accompanying story. As we recently learned, one of the Downton traditions on Christmas Day is that the staff is traditionally given the day off and Lord Grantham (Hugh Bonneville) takes charge of the Christmas lunch. As we get closer to the long-awaited second season finale on Christmas Day on ITV1, another tradition has surfaced which has upstairs dancing with downstairs at the New Year servants’ ball.
Phyllis Logan as Mrs Hughes and Hugh Bonneville as Lord Grantham
“We had an off screen dancing competition and it was clear from the outset we would win Strictly Come Downton,” revealed Hugh.
Phyllis added: “We had to learn the waltz which I thought would be quite simple – but we were knackered at the end of it. Lots of kicking shins and bruised toes.”
Rob James-Collier as Thomas and Maggie Smith as the Dowager Countess
Rob James-Collier, the Downton bad boy footman Thomas, on dancing with the Dowager Countess. “I had to take the legend that is Dame Maggie Smith for a spin on the floor! I was so nervous and managed to stand on the Dame’s toe”.
For a much more detailed behind-the-scenes account of who stepped on who’s toes and who kicked whom in the leg, check out Ian’s full Strictly Come Downton Abbey story. Sounds like a great time in filming, but if anyone seems keen on entering the Strictly Come Dancing competition, my guess is that, after reading Ian’s account, they shouldn’t quit their days jobs just yet…..