Ant McPartlin's shock arrest for drink-driving hit headlines on Monday, but viewers of This Morning were left surprised when the news was left unmentioned throughout the topical daytime show, despite the fact it was trending across social media. Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield – who are both good friends with Ant and Dec – stayed quiet about the incident, despite the fact fellow ITV shows, including Lorraine and Good Morning Britain, had discussed it earlier on in the morning. On Twitter, viewers took to questioning the decision, with one writing: "Surely they have to mention ITV's Ant's drink-driving at some point? #Thismorning." Another said: "Oh This Morning not mentioning Ant then…thought they would lead with that as it was on GMB news and discussed on Lorraine."
Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield kept quiet about Ant McPartlin'sarrest
Lorraine Kelly, who is also friends with Ant, discussed the incident with Dan Wootton on her show, predicting that he would still make an appearance on Saturday Night Takeaway. She said: "Poor guy, he will be there on Saturday night, a lot of people are speculating he won't be there for Saturday Night Takeaway. He will. Unless there is more to it than we all think, I'd be very surprised, he's such a worker."
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Later in the day, Ant confirmed that he will not be taking part in the show for the "foreseeable future," and instead will be going back into rehab. A statement released by Ant and Dec read: "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."
The TV presenters are great friends with Ant and Dec
An ITV spokesperson added: "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… 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."
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Ant was involved in a collision between three vehicles on Sunday afternoon, with officers being called to Richmond, south-west London. The 42-year-old TV star failed a breathalyser and was arrested, although later released. A number of people involved were also treated for minor injuries, including a three-year-old child who was taken to hospital.