Ant McPartlin crash: Family involved in 'nightmare' speak out about 'terrible experience'

Tom Powell
Restaurant owner Faheem Vanoo and chef wife Shilpa Dandekar said they were

The family whose car was involved in a crash with Ant McPartlin have spoken out about their “nightmare”.

Restaurant owner Faheem Vanoo was driving his green Mini with wife Shilpa Dandekar and their four-year-old daughter Amaira when they collided with the TV star’s Mini in Richmond on Sunday.

The family were left “shaken” by the crash but did not suffer any serious injuries. McPartlin was subsequently arrested on suspicion of drink-driving.

“The whole experience has just been a nightmare,” Mr Vanoo, 41, told the Daily Mail.

“It is not something that we ever expected, but we are just grateful that no one was hurt.

“It has been a terrible experience and it feels like we are coming out of a nightmare. It has left us all a bit shaken up.”

Split: Ant with his estranged wife Lisa Armstrong (Dave Benett)

Mr Vanoo, whose wife Shilpa is head chef at their restaurant in Fulham, said there were “certain things” he had been warned not to discuss as police continue to investigate the crash.

McPartlin, 42, was arrested at around 4pm after failing a roadside breathalyser test following the crash involving two other cars.

He reportedly lost control around a bend, causing his car to veer into oncoming traffic before hitting Mr Vanoo’s Mini and another car behind.

A Metropolitan Police spokeswoman said that the presenter was "taken to a south London police station for questioning and has since been released under investigation" and that inquiries continue.

It has since been confirmed he is stepping down from his TV commitments in order to head back to rehab.

Saturday Night Takeaway, which McPartlin hosts with presenting partner Declan Donnelly, will not air this weekend as scheduled.

The star’s publicist said in a statement: "Ant has decided to go back into treatment and step down from his current TV commitments.

"He has spoken with Dec and ITV today and asked for time off for the foreseeable future. As such Saturday Night Takeaway will not be going ahead this Saturday."

An ITV spokesman said: "ITV has taken a joint decision with Ant and Dec's team not to broadcast Saturday Night Takeaway this weekend.

"We will be reviewing options for the last two episodes of the series (March 31 and April 7) which would not feature Ant, who is taking time off to seek treatment.

"We very much hope that he gets the help that he needs."