After ­coming fifth in the 1980 Olympics they never again placed below first until Lillehammer in 1994 when they won the bronze medal.

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Piers Morgan, who has interviewed them for his ITV Life Stories series, reveals on Twitter that Torvill and Dean have admitted that they “dabbled” in a brief romantic affair.

We must wait until the broadcast to find out at what stage of their long partnership the dabbling occurred, or how long it lasted.

What is certain is that the pressure Torvill and Dean faced throughout their competitive years was immense.

Not only did they carry the nation’s hopes of sporting success but also the nation’s desire to see them skate down the aisle too. ­During the Sarajevo Olympics in 1984 the press kept asking us if we were going to announce our marriage.

Both were already experienced skaters – she had started at seven while he took it up when he was 10.

He was in the police cadets while she worked as an insurance clerk (this was in the days before lottery money enabled athletes to train full time). When they left Dean’s coach suggested he team up with Torvill.

“We didn’t ­confirm or deny it,” says Torvill, now 55. ­During the Sarajevo Olympics in 1984 the press kept asking us if we were going to announce our marriage.

'”Torvill and Dean were teenagers when they met at the ice rink in their native Nottingham.

During a warm-up in 1985, she collided with another skater, whose blade sliced Trenary's calf muscles and severed an artery in her left leg. The International Skating Union eliminated figures after that season.

In fall 1986 she placed second to Elizabeth Manley at the St. At the 1987 World Championships, she rallied from 11th in the compulsory figures to place fourth in the short program, again landing the triple flip jump in combination, and fifth in the long program, to place 7th overall. She was 5th in the short program and second in the free skate to Midori Ito but her top placement in the figures kept her in the lead overall.

“Relationships with other ­people didn’t interest us.”As they have now admitted they succumbed to their feelings at some point. According to Torvill they made a deliberate decision to call a halt.“We decided early on that if we had slept together we couldn’t have skated together.