Inside Len Goodman’s health battles and why he kept illness secret while filming Dancing With The Stars

STRICTLY Come Dancing star Len Goodman had a history of health scares before he died of bone cancer aged 78 at the weekend.

The ex-dancer spent time in a hospice in Kent before he tragically passed away on Saturday.

Len Goodman previously had a cancerous mole on his forehead removed

3

Len Goodman previously had a cancerous mole on his forehead removedCredit: Facebook/Melanoma Fund

But this is not the first illness brave Len battled over the years.

He secretly dealt with prostate cancer while filming past series of both Strictly and Dancing with the Stars in the US.

In 2009 he told the Mail On Sunday he’d had surgery and “everything’s gorgeously good”.

He decided to keep filming after doctors reassured him he wasn’t “riddled with it”.

And in 2020 he spoke about getting a mole on his forehead removed after it turned out to be deadly melanoma.

He was pictured at the time with a bandage on the side of his head.

The former Strictly judge, who left the show in 2016 after 14 years, told Good Morning Britain a pal had noticed the mole while they were out playing golf.

He said: “I went and they took it out and it’s gone. It was a tiny little thing on my forehead… probably because I play a lot of golf and I don’t wear a hat, which I do now.”

Skin cancer, also known as melanoma, happens when cells in the skin (melanocytes) are exposed to ultraviolet light, such as sunlight.

Fitness was always important to Len, who previously told how he stretched every morning.

He also played golf and went to the gym twice a week.

But years of dancing left him plagued by arthritis.

In 2015 he had a partial knee replacement, after which he appeared on Strictly with crutches when he refused to take a week off.

He said at the time: “I was in pain for years and by the time I was 67, I was in agony and barely able to walk.

“The worst thing was I love golf, but to do 18 holes I’d have to get a buggy around the course, which left me out of a lot of the fun with my mates.”

He also had decompression surgery on his shoulder in 2016.

The bone had to be shaved because it was jagged and had caused tears as well as aches and pains.

Len became a judge on Strictly in 2004 and his final appearance was on the 2016 Christmas Day special.

A statement from his agent today said: “It is with great sadness to announce that Len Goodman has passed away peacefully, aged 78.

“A much loved husband, father and grandfather who will be sorely missed by family, friends and all who knew him.”

Casey Anthony flips off camera during rare Disney World trip
Marilyn Monroe dress Kim wore to Met Gala could be worth double

Goodman began dancing at 19, winning various competitions including the British Championships in Blackpool in his late 20s, after which he retired.

He was replaced as head judge on the BBC show by Shirley Ballas.

Len, pictured in 2012, became a judge on Strictly in 2004 and his final appearance was on the 2016 Christmas Day special

3

Len, pictured in 2012, became a judge on Strictly in 2004 and his final appearance was on the 2016 Christmas Day specialCredit: PA
Len in action during the Celebrity Golf Classic at Hanbury Manor on July 5, 2017

3

Len in action during the Celebrity Golf Classic at Hanbury Manor on July 5, 2017Credit: Getty