Declan Donnelly will present the Britain's Got Talent 2018 live shows without his longterm TV partner Ant McPartlin, ITV has confirmed. Dec will go solo to host the week of live semi-finals and the final of the show, following Ant's recent arrest for drink-driving and subsequent return to rehab. Ant will still appear in the audition episodes of the hit series, which were filmed back in January. Britain's Got Talent will return to screens on Saturday for its 12th series. If this year's format follows previous series, the five live semi-finals and the final will be screened nightly across one week, usually at the end of May, with the audition shows aired in the weeks running up to it.
Dec will host the live Britain's Got Talent shows without Ant McPartlin
Ant, who spent time in rehab last summer for painkiller and alcohol addiction, was arrested in March following a three-car collision, and later announced he was stepping down from his TV roles to seek further treatment. He is due to appear in court next week, on 16 April. Following his arrest, Ant's publicist said he would be taking time off "for the foreseeable future. In a statement released on Tuesday, ITV said: "We send Ant all our love. And we know that Dec will do a brilliant job."
Britain's Got Talent will return for its 12th series on 14 April
Dec recently hosted the last two episodes of Saturday Night Takeaway by himself. After the series' finale at the weekend, the 42-year-old told the live audience that the shows had been fun, but also "tinged with sadness". He also called for a round of applause for his presenting partner of nearly 30 years. In a video posted on Twitter by an audience member, Dec can be seen saying: "Thanks for all the love and support, it's been a series tinged with... well…" When an audience member then shouts out, "We miss Ant", Dec replies: "Yes, we do, we do. Would you give a round of applause to Ant, who's back at home. Thank you so much. He'll appreciate that a great, great deal."