Birth name Declan Joseph Oliver Donnelly

Birthday 25 September 1975

Star sign Libra

Birthplace Newcastle upon Tyne, Tyne and Wear

Declan Donnelly, known as Dec, was born to dad Alphonsus and mum Anne in 1975. He has three brothers and three sisters, making him the youngest of seven.

Dec’s parents had moved over to Newcastle from Northern Ireland in 1958 and the family grew up on a council estate in the west end of the city.

Despite briefly contemplating becoming a priest, Declan Donelly auditioned for children’s TV drama Byker Grove when he was 12.

He landed the role of Duncan and soon met Ant McPartlin, who played Duncan’s best pal PJ. A lifelong friendship and professional partnership was formed.

The boys went on to have a music career as a duo under the name PJ & Duncan. Their best known hit was Let’s Get Ready To Rhumble.

They also branched out into presenting work and hosted children’s morning show SM:TV Live with Cat Deeley from 1998 to 2001.

In 2002 Ant and Dec moved into primetime TV with Pop Idol, I’m A Celebrity! and their own series Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway.

They went on to host Britain’s Got Talent from 2007 and various game shows such as Ant & Dec’s Push The Button and Red Or Black?

The duo have bagged numerous awards over the years and also have their own production company.

Their personal relationship is as strong as ever. Declan Donnelly acted as best man at Ant McPartlin’s wedding to make-up artist Lisa Armstrong in 2006.

Dec’s own romantic life is often speculated about in the press. He dated actress Clare Buckfield for 10 years before they split in 2003.

He had a long-term relationship with TV presenter Georgie Thompson which ended in 2011 and was linked to Pussycat Dolls singer Ashley Roberts the following year.

Dec is now loved-up with manager girlfriend Ali Astall.

Inside Ant McPartlin’s heartbreaking secret two-year battle

On Sunday 18 June, Ant McPartlin shocked the nation by checking into rehab. As one half of Ant & Dec he’s been on our screens almost consecutively for more than 25 years – but last week the 41-
year-old took the brave decision to step away from the limelight. Even Declan…