Declan Donnelly to host Saturday Night Takeaway alone, ITV confirms

Adjust Comment Print

Tonight's episode of Saturday Night Takeaway is the first time Dec (Declan Donnelly) has appeared on TV without his co-star Ant (McPartlin) since their television debut in Byker Grove in 1989.

Following rumours that Saturday Night Takeaway could be dropped from ITV's schedule, Dec confirmed to their 6.83 million followers on Twitter that the series would continue.

Dr. Helen Driscoll is a psychologist at Sunderland University and feels for December.

Dec could "apologise for Ant's no-show" with a nod to his drink-driving arrest two weeks earlier.

The TV favourite was without his normal companion after Ant stepped down from his presenting commitments when he was charged with drink driving earlier this month.

He made no direct reference to Ant's absence, choosing instead to make a few jokes about him being alone - which went down well with viewers.

And he waited until the very end of the show to express his heartfelt thanks for the support the audience had given him.

Ant is still expected to get screen time in a pre-recorded sketch but regulars Scarlett Moffatt and Stephen Mulhern will take on greater presenting roles.

He thanked them for their "very, very, warm reception", before adding: "I've got twice the amount of work to do so we're going to crack on and say hello to our star guest announcer Mr Stephen Merchant".

Hours before the live show on Saturday, the programme's official Twitter page previewed the script, which confirmed Dec would be hosting alone, writing: "Just a little photo to prove that we don't just wing it, there is actually a script!"

Dozens of fans - including fellow broadcasters Piers Morgan, Susanna Reid and Dermot O'Leary - congratulated Dec on his successful performance on social media.

"I know Ant would be proud of you".

Producers are still deciding whether Dec speak about Ant or ignore the matter entirely.

Ant became convinced his co-presenter Dec was a mole after talking to Joanna Lumley, who also featured in the series, and gave Dec an almighty telling off.