Strictly's Dan Walker's 20-year marriage to childhood sweetheart and son's name blunder

Dan Walker has been a BBC Breakfast presenter since 2014, and he quit his role on Football Focus after 12 years in April.

“It has been an amazing 12 years and I have loved every second of it,” he said in a statement released on social media.

“I am so proud of the job we’ve done, the changes we’ve made and issues we’ve looked at while the football landscape changed immeasurably.

“I’d like to say thank you to the amazing team at Focus who put so much into the show each week and thank you to the audience for tuning in every Saturday.”

Dan, 44, remains host of BBC Breakfast, but fans will soon be seeing much more of him, as he has signed up to this year’s Strictly Come Dancing, which begins on Saturday.

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© Instagram Dan Walker

But anyone wondering if the ‘Strictly curse’ would hit, it’s unlikely to affect Dan, who has been married for 20 years.

Dan and Susie met and fell in love while at university, two years before they swapped vows.

The couple met at the University of Sheffield where Dan graduated with a Masters degree in broadcast journalism in 1999.

And the pair live now in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, with Dan’s trip to the BBC offices in Salford an hour-and-a-half drive away.

Discussing his choice to move back to the Yorkshire city with the Daily Mail in 2018, Dan said: “My wife Sarah and I moved to Sheffield last year because it’s played a big part in our lives – we both studied here and it’s where I began broadcasting.”

Dan and Sarah have gone on to welcome three children together, daughters Susanna and Jessica, as well as a son named Joe.

But his Wikipedia page previously erroneously claimed his son was called Chuck, due to a joke he’d made.

© Instagram Dan Walker instagram

“About 5 years ago I joked in an interview that I loved @chucknorris & I’d name a son after him,” he explained on Instagram. ‪”My daft mate now keeps changing my wiki page to claim I have a son called ‘Chuck’.”

Dan is mostly very private about his family life, but in June, he gave fans a glimpse of his home and his daughter as she turned 14.

The TV host shared a collection of photos which showed a ‘Happy Birthday’ sign hanging up in his living room, a glimpse of his family garden, and a photo of Susie while her face was covered by an emoji.

“Happy Birthday to our amazing, gorgeous, kind and wonderful 14-year-old Susie,” he wrote.

He also explained the gifts and treats he had sourced for his daughter.

“She wanted waffles for breakfast, a chocolate brownie cake with sprinkles for later & some brown converse high-tops (which are surprisingly hard to find),” he admitted.

Dan added: “I hope you have a lovely Sunday.”

Family is incredibly important to Dan, and last month he took some time off from his hosting duties to spend more time with his loved ones.

He tweeted: “Back soon. Just spending time with the family,” before adding a thumbs up emoji.

It is likely his loved ones will feature on Strictly later this year, provided he stays in the competition, for interviews with the contestants’ families.

And it seems Dan could be one to watch on the show – as bookies reckon he is one of the favourites to win.

Leading bookmaker Coral have suggested the star is third favourite to win with odds of 6-1 putting him behind former Corrie actress Katie McGlynn and McFly singer Tom Fletcher.

Coral’s Harry Aitkenhead said: “Dan Walker has been linked with Strictly every year for as long as anybody can remember and now 2021 is finally the series that he will compete in.

“We think he’s got a lot of potential to go a long way on the dance-floor, making him the third favourite to win the show at odds of 6-1.”

When it was announced Dan was going to be starring on Strictly, he said: “My kids have only asked me to go on two shows – Saturday Mash-Up! and Strictly.

“I did Saturday Mash-Up! so it’s time to embrace the sequins.”

* Strictly Come Dancing launches on Saturday, 18th September at 7:45pm on BBC One

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