Declan Donnelly has confirmed that he will present Saturday Night Takeaway on his own, after co-host Ant McPartlin was arrested at the weekend, stepped back from all TV work, and announced he was going into rehab again.
In a tweet posted from the pair’s official Twitter account, the message read: ‘Whilst I never thought I’d be in this position, after much discussion and careful consideration we’ve decided that the remaining shows of this series of Saturday Night Takeaway will go ahead.’
‘We made a promise to take hundreds of deserving winners to Florida to watch the series finale, and we will honour that.
‘Everyone at ITV and the Takeaway team feels we owe it to the audience to complete the series,’ it concluded.
Dec, who has worked alongside Ant since first appearing in Byker Grove together as kids, is reportedly ‘devastated’ by the events of the past few days, and was seen in public yesterday for the first time since his friend hit the headlines.
An ITV statement revealed that the show would return by the end o the month and will feature just Dec:
‘We can confirm that Saturday Night Takeaway, presented by Declan Donnelly, will return to ITV on March 31, and the series finale will be taking place at Universal Orlando Resort in Florida a week later.’
More images of Dec, 42, have emerged out and about today, as speculation grows over the future of his television career, considering one half of the Ant and Dec duo is out of action for the foreseeable future.
However, despite comments from telly stars Piers Morgan and Phillip Schofield that claim Ant, also 42, should take responsibility for his actions, the former has called for Dec to move forward on his own and save his own career, while best friend Ant’s spirals.
The car crash, which happened on Sunday 18 March, involved three vehicles – including Ant’s Mini that contained his mum and pet Labrador – and resulted in a three-year-old girl being taken to hospital for a precautionary check-up.
After he failed a roadside breathalyser test, the I’m A Celeb presenter was take to a South London police station for questioning, but was released in the early hours of Monday.
A statement by his publicist then confirmed the star will take time away from appearing on television while embarking on another stint of rehab:
‘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.’
The Geordie duo rose to fame through BBC’s Byker Grove before becoming weekend morning favourites alongside Cat Deeley on SM:TV Live between 1998 and 2003.