ASTON Merrygold has bounced back from the most surprising exit in the history of Strictly Come Dancing to land on his feet on the 2018 tour of Rip It Up, Dancing And Singing Through The 60s.

On Friday, the JLS singer joins fellow Strictly alumni, 2011 winner Harry Judd, the McFly drummer, and 2012 winner Louis Smith, the Olympic gymnast, at York Barbican with "unfinished business" after "the people's champion's" Strictly stretch was unexpectedly curtailed way too soon.

Did that make Rip It Up so appealing, Aston? "100 per cent. It’s unfinished business. That’s the best way to put it. My run on Strictly felt like it was cut a bit too short for myself, just because there were certain things I expected from myself and wanted to achieve. I also wanted to try and learn. This way I get the best of both. With Rip It Up I get to perform every single night, and I only have to do one lot of rehearsals and wrack my brain a little bit."

How well do you know your co-stars? "I've known Harry from within the music industry and I've known Louis since before I can remember. Our parents went to school together, so it's just funny we're now doing a show together.

What is the biggest challenge doing the Rip It Up tour? "Probably the fact it's a dance show and everyone presumes I'm a trained dancer and can dance, when I'm as rough around the edges as anyone else out there. I've never had any formal kind of training. Strictly was my first ever sample of training ever. People get training and experience mixed up. No-one has told me 'this is right' and 'this is wrong'. Before, I just got up on stage and did it."

Tickets for Friday's 7.30pm song-and-dance show are on sale on 0844 854 2757 or at