Strictly descends into chaos with blunders from presenters and judges, injuries, fix claims and even an 'explicit tattoo' showing

Co-host Claudia Winkleman, 46, battled issues with her microphone, the judges had to reshoot several pieces to camera and bosses had to bat off fix claims.

Producers even had to move one member of the audience because her friend had an “explicit tattoo” on her leg that was not fit for primetime broadcast.

At one point presenter Tess Daly, 49, suffered a slip of the tongue as she referred to next week’s show as “the semi”, rather than the quarters, causing her to fall about laughing.

She also struggled to get around the studio after telling the crowd she had “broken her toe” after an accident earlier in the week.

On another occasion her in-ear monitor, in which producers talk to her and tell her key information, stopped working completely.

The audience were cooped up in Elstree Studios, Hertfordshire, for nearly seven hours after a series of cock-ups.

A pre-recorded group dance was filmed three times and a film for the show’s Christmas special took more than ten attempts.

And the show’s first ever Lindy Hop-a-thon — in which all seven couples danced at the same time — nearly ended in disaster as the judges lost their leaderboard, forgot the dancers’ names, and announced the scores in the wrong order.

Eventually a paper copy of their verdicts was handed to them by a producer, prompting some fans to believe they were being told how to vote.

A show source said: “The producers literally had their heads in the hands at points.

“They couldn’t believe so much was going wrong in one night’s work. They had to pre-record various parts of both Saturday’s show, next week’s show and the Christmas special so they were really up against it. But stuff just kept going wrong which meant the day took much longer than it should have.

“The judges made a mess of the Lindy Hop-a-thon, there were issues with the autocue and everything just took hours as a result. The audience were more than a little restless by the time they got out.”

The judges’ tablet, which had the Lindy Hop scores on, froze just as they had to deliver their verdict to millions of viewers.

A producer had to hand Craig Revel Horwood, 53, a piece of paper they had initially written their scores on.

Ash: Arm still in it

The singer, 37, who won the dance-off, posted the jokey pic on Instagram.

In the wake of the blunder, head judge Shirley, 58, dismissed the drama as “live TV” but there was confusion when she named Ashley Roberts and Pasha Kovalev first — when she was supposed to be telling fans who had come in 7th place. They were actually first.

Shirley also told Charles Venn and Karen Clifton they were in fifth place, but said “Charles and Dianne” instead.

A source close to Tess said last night: “The woman moved had nothing to do with Tess. She didn’t even know it had happened.”

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