JOE McFadden was crowned this year's winner of Strictly Come Dancing, as delighted fans heralded the series as the best one in the show's fourteen year history.
The former Holby City actor went head-to-head with Debbie McGee, Gemma Atkinson and Alexandra Burke this evening and, after tough competition, beat them at the final hurdle to take home the glitterball trophy.
After being announced as the public's winner, the stunned star said: "It’s completely surreal! I can’t believe it! We did it!”
He then told Claudia Winkleman that he thought he "wouldn't win in a million years" and added: "I'm so in awe of everyone who started all those weeks ago. We've become such a tight unit."
Joe, whose partner Katya Jones burst into tears after they were crowned, won the judges over with his impressive routines.
Turning to Katya, Joe said: "This one is an amazing woman. Thank you so much for sticking with me and persevering, and being the most amazing artist and dancer and counsellor and slave driver! She's amazing."
After the show ended, the pair thanked fans for their win in a short video clip posted on the official BBC Strictly Twitter account.
Joe said: "Thank you so much to everyone online, we've only just gone and won somehow'', adding: "Thank you so much for all of the support, it really means a lot.''
Alongside him an excited Katya Jones squealed: "It's insane''.
Fans cheered from their sofas as Katya hugged her partner in delight as the rest of the team - including her husband Neil Jones - ran on to the dance floor to celebrate their victory.
They were the only finalists to never appear in the bottom two throughout their time on the show.
The judges' final scores were tight, with just five points between top ranking Alexandra and Gemma.
Alexandra topped the leader board with 119 points, followed by Joe with 118, Debbie with 117 and finally Gemma with 114.
Their scores were simply to guide viewers however and the decision to crown Joe and Katya this year's champions was all in viewers' hands.
Fans of the BBC dancing show praised this series as the best ever, with one writing: “This has been the best one yet.”
Another tweeted: “his series has been incredible, I’m so sad it’s over.”
A third commented: “What a wonderful series of #Strictly capped off by a fab finale, well done all involved.”
The stars of the show kicked off the two-and-a-half hour spectacular with a bang, performing a group dance routine to What A Feeling – with the four finalists joining the professionals centre stage.
However, viewers were devastated when they noted professionals Kevin and Karen Clifton weren't performing together following news of their marriage crisis.
Alexandra and Gorka were the first up for the evening – earning a perfect 40 as they led the judges’ choice round with their American Smooth routine for Wouldn’t It Be Lovely from My Fair Lady.
Admitting she absolutely loved the dance routine, Shirley Ballas told the former X Factor star: “You truly captured the essence of everything the Strictly final was about.
“You were so feminine - you brought a much softer side. We’re used to you with your energy – it was exquisite.”
Bruno agreed and said: “Lovelier than ever and even more fragrant than the blooms on display!”
“You give your heart and soul in everything that you do,” he added.
Craig Revel Horwood then joked: “Well I thought it was absolutely dreadful – because I couldn’t find a single thing wrong with it.”
Debbie and Giovanni were next up, scoring a near-perfect 39 by performing a Salsa containing a series of tricky lifts during a routine to Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You.
Bruno Tonioli said: “You’ve got to be kidding me, you’re like the TARDIS! You can defy all the laws of physics!”
Darcey Bussell also praised her, saying that she wanted to bottle the star’s entertainment value.
Debbie later admitted that she was terrified about performing the lifts again – but it was her trust in Giovanni that got her through it.
This week proved to be tricky for the star, who had fallen ill with the flu and was forced to cancel rehearsals.
Gemma and Aljaz took to the dancefloor next with their Paso Doble to Coldplay’s Viva La Vida – earning a score of 38 for their efforts.
Shirley praised Gemma for her resilience and told her: “You have had an open mind from day one – you’ve taken criticism on the chin – you’ve been amazing.”
“You’ve taken the bull by the horns darling. My darling you’ve grown so much after the last few months,” said proud Bruno.
“Every time you’ve come back you’ve taken criticism.”
Joe and Katya finished the judges’ choice sector with their Vienesse Waltz from movie week, themed like Doctor Zhivago – and also earned 39 points.
Katya broke down in her rehearsal chat, admitting it “meant a lot to her” to make it to the final week.
Darcey was impressed with their efforts and told them: “You rose to the challenge and you excelled” – before admitting that it was her favourite routine of the entire series.
Shirley then proudly added: “I just thought it had it all. It was big, it was bold and it was beautiful - and if I had an 11 paddle for that fleckle, you would be getting it.”
“You were fantastic, I’m very proud of you Joe.”
Bruno added: “I think we are all falling in love all over again, from Russia with love, wasn’t it fantastic?”
Moving on to their show routines, Alexandra and Gorka embraced showbiz in all its glory with an Broadway inspired performance to There’s No Business Like Show Business.
Darcey told them: “I just feel like you’ve come into your own – your energy is just boundless.”
They earned 39 for their performance, with Craig being the only one to keep them from their perfect track record of the evening.