Dec Donnelly confirms news of first child with wife Ali after week of anguish over Ant troubles
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Dec Donnelly confirms news of first child with wife Ali after week of anguish over Ant troubles

DECLAN DONNELLY has confirmed he is expecting his first child with wife Ali Astall.

The TV presenter, one half of popular duo Ant and Dec, revealed the good news on Instagram.

Sharing a black and white photo of him and his wife on their wedding day, he thanked fans for all the lovely messages.

"The news has sneaked out a little earlier than we had hoped," he said. "But Ali and I are delighted to be expecting our first child.

"Thanks for all the love, we really appreciate it."

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The pair married in 2015 after Donnelly proposed to his long-time agent, Ali Astall, on an Australian island before heading into the jungle to film I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!

Born and raised in Newcastle to parents from Derry, Donnelly first rose to fame alongside Anthony McPartlin on Byker Grove. 

McPartlin acted as best man on the day - nine years after Donnelly did the same for his wedding.

Donnelly had been dating Astall since 2013 and the pair were joined by a host of celebrities and well-wishers as they said 'I do' at St Michael's Church in Elswick, Newcastle.

News of the couple's first child comes at what's been a difficult time for the star after his friend and presenting partner Ant McPartlin returned to rehab following a drink-driving arrest.

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Last week an ITV spokesperson confirmed that Declan Donnelly would present Saturday Night Takeaway on his own when the show returns on Saturday, March 31.

They said: "We can confirm that Saturday Night Takeaway, presented by Declan Donnelly, will return to ITV on March 31, and the series finale will be taking place at Universal Orlando Resort in Florida a week later.”

It was also revealed that troubled star Ant – who entered rehab last year for a prescription drugs addiction – would be taking a leave of absence from TV work to return to treatment.