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Ant and Dec thought coronation invite was a 'wind-up'

At the end of the day, they're TV royalty.

British television presenting duo Ant and Dec, top right, sit as guests arrive to attend Britain's King Charles III and Queen Consort Camilla's coronation ceremony, at Westminster Abbey, in London, Saturday, May 6, 2023. (Phil Noble/Pool Photo via AP)
Ant McPartlin and Dec Donnelly seated for the coronation of King Charles III. (Pool Photo via AP)

Ant McPartlin and Dec Donnelly weren't quite convinced by their coronation invitations at first.

The TV presenters, who can currently be seen patting Britain's Got Talent contestants on the back every Saturday night, joined the likes of Oscar-winner Emma Thompson and pop star Katy Perry for the crowning of King Charles III and Queen Camilla at Westminster Abbey on Saturday.

Ahead of entering the ceremonial chamber, though, the pair admitted they weren't even convinced it wasn't a practical joke.

Read more: Prince Andrew arrives at coronation in full regalia as Prince Harry dressed in plain suit

"We're very proud and privileged, I think, to be invited to a coronation. It's a wonderful day!" McPartlin told ITV News, before Donnelly chipped in with: "It's quite surreal though, isn't it?! To get the invite through to come to a coronation.

"I was like, 'This has gotta be a wind-up'. Somebody has surely thought it's our time to be wound up, and this is it. But no, it was for real and here we are. Can't quite believe it."

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 06:  A guest takes a selfie with British television presenting duo Ant and Dec as guests wait during the Coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla on May 6, 2023 in London, England. The Coronation of Charles III and his wife, Camilla, as King and Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and the other Commonwealth realms takes place at Westminster Abbey today. Charles acceded to the throne on 8 September 2022, upon the death of his mother, Elizabeth II. (Photo by Phil Noble - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
A guest takes a selfie with the Geordie icons inside the ceremonial hall. (Phil Noble - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

The pair, who are currently on-screen presenting I’m A Celebrity… South Africa, entered the abbey just before 9am in their morning suits, greeting other guests with waves and smiles.

As the pair grinned and said hello to members of the congregation in the North Transept, they were welcomed with impromptu cheers.

Best known for fronting shows including Saturday Night Takeaway, I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! and Britain’s Got Talent, Ant and Dec have hosted the Prince’s Trust Awards 10 times and recently collaborated with the charity on a course to make the media industry more accessible.

Australian musician Nick Cave, British Vogue’s editor-in-chief Edward Enninful, BBC director-general Tim Davie, actress Dame Joanna Lumley, TV host Jay Blades and singer Lionel Richie, who will perform at the coronation concert on Sunday, were also in attendance.

Watch: Ant and Dec, Katy Perry, Emma Thompson and Lionel Richie among celebrities invited to King Charles' coronation