Dec: I’m devastated
DECLAN DONNELLY put on a brave face as he was seen in public for the first time since best pal Ant McPartlin’s arrest on suspicion of drink-driving.
The TV star is said to be ‘absolutely devastated’ after his presenting partner cancelled all his work commitments for the ‘forseeable future’ so he can return to rehab. Dec, 42, photographed out and about in west London with his wife Ali Astall yesterday, has yet to comment publicly.
But This Morning’s Philip Schofield and Holly Willoughby touched on the three-car crash that Ant was involved in after viewers criticised them for avoiding the subject on Monday.
Schofield, 55, began a discussion of their fellow ITV star’s problems on yesterday’s show by saying: ‘This is difficult for us. We’re talking about a friend here. Like many people, we are shocked and saddened.’
He added: ‘Ant is clearly struggling. He loves Dec, he loves his career, he loves the shows they make together and he loves their fans.’
Willoughby, 37, said: ‘We want to wish those shaken and upset by the collision a quick recovery, and for Ant, we hope he gets some time and space to return to full health.’
The pair said Ant needs to take ‘responsibility for his actions’. Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway will not air this weekend.
And questions linger over whether they will continue to co-host Britain’s Got Talent and I’m a Celebrity. The pair were nominated for two gongs at last night’s Royal Television Society Awards in central London but failed to win either, losing out to Love Island and The Last Leg. But even Dec’s TV future is now in doubt as the duo, who have ruled the small screen for 20 years, have previously vowed never to work without one another.
In their 2010 autobiography Ooh! What A Lovely Pair, they wrote: ‘Neither one of us would ever be on our own out there.’
Ant, 42, reportedly failed a roadside breath test after crashing his Mini into two cars on Sunday.
Amaira Vanoo, four, was taken to hospital for checks after his car collided with her parents’ green Mini in Richmond, south-west London. She was released a short time later.
Ant was questioned by police after the crash before being released under investigation.
On Monday, his team said he was seeking further help having first received treatment for a prescription drug addictions last year. He said at the time he also struggled with booze.
Author: Tom Stichbury