The trolls will never bring me down, says Ellie Simmonds

Strictly: Ellie says she doesn't like family knowing dances

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The popular Paralympic swimmer, 27, dazzled judges and viewers last night with her sexy Salsa.

Ellie, who has dwarfism, said: “I’m loving the glamour, hair and make-up journey. Dancing every single day is so fun and it’s incredible to be part of the show.”

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour, Ellie told host Emma Barnett: “I’m way out of my comfort zone and it’s totally different to what I’m used to. I’m in glitter, hair, make-up, fake tan and my hotel bed sheets are getting orange!”

Ellie, who retired from competitive sport last year, previously revealed she had been targeted after her first appearance on the BBC One show.

“You attach yourself to that one negative comment. It sticks with you and it can bring you down but you try and bring yourself away,” she said.

“I’m doing it for myself and I am so proud and for all the individuals with dwarfism. I’ve had people not just from the UK but worldwide reach out to me and it means so much.”

Ellie is the first person with dwarfism to sign up to the hit show. She is partnered with Nikita Kuzmin.

She said she had been verbally attacked and had cruel questions asked of her, saying: “It’s comments like why is she dancing, how can she dance? But I just try and think of the positive comments. The outpouring of love and support has been amazing.”

She told how touched she had been when people tell her that seeing a person with dwarfism on the show is inspirational and one fan told her “my daughter is seeing herself on TV”.

Other stars competing for the glitterball include Will Mellor, Matt Goss and comedian Ellie Taylor, 38, from Brentwood in Essex, who said: “I am aching in places I didn’t know I had. My boobs are aching, it’s my pecs.”

The mother-of-one performed the Viennese waltz dressed as Bo Peep alongside her professional partner Johannes Radebe.

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