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EastEnders actor James Bye has revealed he is under "added pressure" to make it to the final of Strictly Come Dancing.

James, 38, who played market trader Martin Fowler in the BBC soap since 2014 has opened up about his nerves ahead of Strictly.

5James has revealed there is "added pressure" on his shouldersCredit: PA 5James as Martin Fowler in EastEndersCredit: BBC

The family man has explained how the success of the Albert Square residents who have previously competed on the reality show is very daunting.

Asked whether he has the glitterball trophy in his sights, James said: "I’d love to get to Blackpool, then you can say you really gave it a good go. There is also the added pressure that the last three people from EastEnders have been in the final!"

James is of course referring to Rose Ayling-Ellis, who played Frankie on the show, who won last year with Giovanni Pernice.

Prior to that, in 2021, Maisie Smith, aka Tiffany Butcher Baker, was runner-up, while in 2020, Honey Mitchell actress Emma Barton finished third.

And even those Walford favourites who didn't make the final made quite the impression.

James revealed: "My best friend, Davood Ghadami [Kush Kazemi] was on the show years ago, and I came to watch and he was great. I remember him doing the Paso Doble and that did look good.

"At the time I wound him up about it, but I was really proud of him. Also Jake Wood, when he did the snake hips to Mambo No. 5, that was a million miles from Max Branning."

James also sang the praises of reigning champion Rose.

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"When the music dropped I think she brought the nation to tears," he said. "It was beautiful and she is such an incredible human being."

As for any advice his co-stars past and present have given him, James told how they have all their wise words are "pretty much the same".

He added: When I was announced I had lots of people calling me, Brian Conley, Tameka Empson and obviously Davood. The advice to be honest, was pretty much the same and it was just enjoy yourself and embrace it.

"It's completely different to anything else. I think Brian’s words were 'You're never going to have an experience like it, so just don't miss a beat, just go with it', and I'm really going to hold on to that."

Of course juggling a full time role on the soap with Strictly's intense training schedule isn't easy, but James has worked with EastEnders bosses to make sure he can do both.

He told The Sun Online: "As far as I'm aware at the minute they're going to quieten me down as much as possible.

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"I'm still going to be in the show, but the beauty is that we film across the road [from Strictly studios] so as soon as I'm finished filming I can shoot over to this and rehearse.

"We're just going to have to find time where we can to start with, but they're really understanding at EastEnders, they're brilliant at that."

5James with best pal Davood 5James cosies up to wife VictoriaCredit: instagram 5Rose and Giovanni are a tough act to follow Topics
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Aquarius weekly horoscope: What your star sign has in store for September 25 – October 1

AQUARIUS

JAN 21 - FEB 18

1Speak up against unfair treatment on Monday

It’s never too late to learn something new, that’s the message of your chart - and it’s the push you need to get your name down for an upcoming course. 

Pleasing yourself, not impressing others, should be the theme of your week.

This includes your love strategy. 

Instead of looking the other way, face some passion truths - and your reaction will surprise you. 

Horoscope traits

What does your star sign mean for you?

Aries - The best and worst characteristics of the head of the zodiac
Aquarius - The traits you need to know for the air sign
Capricorn - What does this star sign mean for your personality?
Cancer - The key traits for the sign include a keen love of food
Gemini - The traits to be aware of for the sign with a symbol of twins
Leo - The best and worst characteristics of the fire sign
Libra - What does the seventh star sign mean for your personality?
Pisces - The key traits for the sign include an interest in the arts
Sagittarius - The traits you need to know for the fire sign
Scorpio - What does this star sign mean for your personality?
Taurus - The best and worst characteristics of the earth sign
Virgo - The key traits for the sign include loyalty and kindness

DESTINY DAYS: Speak up against unfair treatment on Monday. 

Wear what you want, when you want — on Tuesday. 

Reply to a tricky money message by Friday. 

LUCKY LINKS: A woman who often wears leather. A family of three or more sisters. A business with an orange and black logo. 

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I CHING INSIGHT: The five soft, and one strong, lines of the I Ching symbol RETURNING indicate that you could experience up to five marriages, or serious, committed relationships, throughout your life. 

But this I Ching can also represent one love bond going through five distinct phases, to emerge stronger and more secure.

This is a symbol of mature self-knowledge, and mutual respect, that allows partners to be honest, and let each other grow. 

It also shows success in the end in a hands-on test or task — so do keep going. 

Fabulous is the home of horoscopes, with weekly updates on what’s in store for your star sign as well as daily predictions.

You can also use our series of guides to find out everything from which star sign to hook up with for the steamiest sex to what it’s like to live your life totally by your horoscope.

ZODIAC SIGNS: What's a star sign and how do I find mine? Topics
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