Strictly judges are too ‘hard’ on Emma Barton after gruelling filming schedule says EastEnders co-star Kellie Shirley

EASTENDERS’ Emma Barton is getting the rough end of the stick from Strictly Come Dancing judges, according to her former co-star Kellie Shirley.

Kellie, who played feisty Carly Wicks on the BBC One soap, told Monday’s Lorraine how her pal was juggling her hectic filming schedule as Walford’s Honey Mitchell with rehearsals alongside professional partner, Anton Du Beke.

EastEnders actress Kellie Shirley says Strictly Come Dancing judges are being too hard on Emma Barton

Kellie told stand-in host Christine Lampard: “Every time I see her I just want to burst into tears.

“She’s a perfectionist. She really loves it.

“I think they (the judges) were hard on her this weekend.”

Christine agreed with her comments on the sultry Paso Doble routine, during which judge Craig Revel Horwood bluntly likened her to a “sack of potatoes.”

Emma, 42, was likened to a ‘sack of potatoes’ on Saturday’s show
PA:Press Association
She performed a sultry Paso Doble with Anton Du Beke
PA:Press Association
Kellie, who played Carly Wicks in Albert Square, said she would be juggling a tough filming schedule

Kellie was quick to point out the 42-year-old’s “tough” filming schedule which included scenes for the soap’s Christmas specials recorded ahead of time.

Despite the negative comments from the panel, Emma has progressed to next week’s themed show for Halloween.

Instead, it was former footballer David James and professional partner Nadiya Bychkova who faltered in the Dance Off and were sent home.

Following Craig’s catty remarks on Emma’s performance on Saturday, she was granted just 26 points.

Judge Craig’s catty remarks were called out by fans
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She hit back, and told him on the show: “I have been filming the EastEnders Christmas special this week. “I have had about 12 Christmas dinners.”

Viewers were equally stunned by Craig’s catty comments and shared their frustration on Twitter.

One person typed: “Thought judges were a little too harsh on Emma and Anton.

Emma, who plays Honey Mitchell, told how she had been chowing down Christmas dinners all week
PA:Press Association

“Their Paso wasn’t perfect, but she nailed the character.”

Earlier this week Anton revealed that Emma had struggled to rehearse as her busy EastEnders schedule left no time for dancing.

Appearing on This Morning, 53-year-old Anton admitted that he and Emma were only able to start rehearsing Saturday night’s a few days before.

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