Ant McPartlin will not host I'm A Celebrity and will take rest of year off

Move follows drink-driving conviction earlier this year

Ant McPartlin was caught driving while more than twice the legal limit in March
Ant McPartlin was caught driving while more than twice the legal limit in March

Ant McPartlin has pulled out of hosting I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! for the first time since the show began 16 years ago.

The TV presenter announced a break from all television duties for the rest of 2018 following a drink-driving conviction earlier this year.

The 42-year-old added he and Declan Donnelly, his presenting partner, made a "joint decision" not to present a new series of Saturday Night Takeaway next year.

The former Byker Grove star was banned from the road for 20 months and fined £86,000 after pleading guilty to driving while more than twice the legal limit in March.

McPartlin said in a statement: "My recovery is going very well and for that to continue having spoken to Dec and ITV, I have made the decision to take the rest of the year off.

"I'd like to thank both Dec and ITV for their continued support and I look forward to getting back to work in the new year."

Donnelly added: "Whilst I am obviously sad at the thought of being without my best friend in Australia this year, I am proud of the work Ant has been doing privately and I am fully supportive of his decision. I'm looking forward to us both being reunited on screen in 2019."

Declan Donnelly presents Satuday Night Takeaway without Ant McPartlin

Donnelly hosted the final episodes of ITV series Saturday Night Takeaway without McPartlin earlier this year.

But the duo said "they will instead bring the show back in 2020, bigger and better than ever".

Donnelly also hosted the live shows of Britain's Got Talent without his long-time TV partner, although McPartlin appeared in the pre-recorded auditions.

The duo have fronted Britain's Got Talent together since 2007.

ITV director of television Kevin Lygo said: "ITV is completely supportive of Ant taking as much time as he needs in his recovery and of this mutual decision to rest Takeaway in 2019. Ant is clearly making good progress and we wish him all the very best and look forward to him returning to ITV next year. An announcement on I'm A Celebrity plans will be made in due course."

Additional reporting by PA.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in