Ant McPartlin shares real reason for pausing ITV show after baby news as he admits he and Dec ‘need space’

Ant McPartlin shares real reason for pausing ITV show after baby news as he admits he and Dec ‘need space’

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Olivia Gantzer

By Olivia Gantzer

Published: 22/02/2024

- 09:28

The presenters have been fronting Saturday Night Takeaway since 2002

Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly recently confirmed they’d be pausing ITV’s Saturday Night Takeaway, which they’ve presented for 22 years.

The show’s 20th series is set to kick off this weekend but the Geordie duo have stunned fans by announcing an upcoming hiatus from the series.

Ant and Dec

The duo have been working together for decades


McPartlin has now revealed the reason behind the decision, explaining he and Donnelly “need to spend some time with our family”. He went on to add that they also "need space" from each other.

The 48-year-old is soon to become a father as his wife Anne-Marie Corbett, 46, is pregnant with his first child.

Corbett also has two children from a previous marriage, and McPartlin has previously talked about how much he enjoys being a stepfather to them.

Meanwhile, Donnelly, also 48, shares two children, five-year-old Isla and one-year-old Jack, with his wife Ali Astall.

Ant and Dec

Ant is expecting his first child


Speaking to Fault Magazine, McPartlin went on: “We’ve both got children that we need to spend time with for a little bit.

“We need time to think and time to step back and look at the bigger picture and just see where we are now.”

The pair also looked back at their decades-long professional and personal relationship, and McPartlin explained they’d both "changed," adding they needed to “give each other space”.

“We started working together when we were 13, and we became friends very quickly. But, you know, we're both, were are both 49 this year,” he pointed out.

Ant with his wife Anne-Marie

Ant and his wife are expecting their first child together in June


Continuing, he added: “We're obviously not the same people that we were when we were 13.

“So throughout our career, you know, we've both changed. But being able to maintain that friendship doesn't come naturally.

“Sometimes you have to work with friendships, and sometimes you have to compromise and sometimes you have to give each other space and time and whatever.”

News of McPartlin being a father-to-be came earlier this month, and at the time a source told The Sun: “It’s no secret that Ant has always wanted children, but that it may never happen for him was something he had, sadly, come to terms with.

Ant and Dec

Ant and Dec have hosted Saturday Night Takeaway since 2002


"When they found out last year, they were absolutely delighted, but obviously kept the news quiet for as long as possible.

“To be having a child two years short of his 50th birthday, with the love of his life, is the stuff of dreams for Ant.

“He’s already a wonderful, doting father to Anne-Marie’s kids, and together they’re going to be brilliant parents to this latest addition to the family.”

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