Sun. May 26th, 2024
alert-–-from-rehab-and-record-breaking-fines-to-recovery-and-personal-redemption…-how-ant-mcpartlin-pulled-himself-back-from-the-brink-after-drink-drive-shame-and-painkiller-addiction-as-presenter-welcomes-his-first-childAlert – From rehab and record breaking fines to recovery and personal redemption… how Ant McPartlin pulled himself back from the brink after drink drive shame and painkiller addiction as presenter welcomes his first child

Had it been a film it would be a classic tale of triumph over adversity, of reversal of fortune and, ultimately, personal redemption. 

But the story is true, and as Ant McPartlin celebrates the birth of his first child he could be forgiven for viewing it as the happy ending he and his supporting cast of friends and family members craved. 

The Britain’s Got Talent and Saturday Night Takeaway presenter confirmed wife Anne-Marie had given birth to their son, Wilder Patrick, on Tuesday afternoon. 

Sharing a photo of himself cradling the newborn baby, he wrote: ‘Born, 14/05/24 at 8.54am. Baby is beautiful, Mummy’s a legend, Sisters are over the moon. Dad’s a mess!’

Celebrity friends and fans promptly flooded his Instagram page with messages of congratulation as the presenter settled into his first week as a first-time father. 

Had the last six years of Ant McPartlin's life been a film it would be a classic tale of triumph over adversity, of reversal of fortune and, ultimately, personal redemption

Had the last six years of Ant McPartlin’s life been a film it would be a classic tale of triumph over adversity, of reversal of fortune and, ultimately, personal redemption

Ant McPartlin has welcomed his first child, a son named Wilder Patrick McPartlin, with his wife Anne-Marie Corbett

Ant McPartlin has welcomed his first child, a son named Wilder Patrick McPartlin, with his wife Anne-Marie Corbett 

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The news is the latest positive step in a remarkable turnaround for McPartlin, whose career appeared to be in tatters following a 2018 arrest for drink driving close to his London home.

The presenter was pictured looking disheveled and out of sorts after colliding with a BMW after taking his dogs for a walk in nearby Richmond Park. 

Dr Audrey Ng was driving the BMW he ploughed into while twice the legal alcohol limit. He also hit another Mini and a four-year-old girl who was in it needed hospital treatment.

Her son – who was in the back seat – later told her the Mini came ’round the corner like a rocket.’ 

A separate witness to the crash told : ‘There were two cars travelling along Lower Richmond road – a green Mini Cooper and an X5 which was about much further back.

‘A black Mini Cooper shot round the corner but instead of turning left went straight across the road and smashed into the green Mini.

‘It was a bad crash but the black Mini Cooper still travelled on and crashed into the BMW behind which had done an emergency brake. There was a woman and her young son in there. 

McPartlin's career appeared to be in tatters following a 2018 arrest for drink driving close to his London home (pictured shortly after the incident)

McPartlin’s career appeared to be in tatters following a 2018 arrest for drink driving close to his London home (pictured shortly after the incident) 

A stony-faced McPartlin outside Wimbledon Magistrates Court before being handed a record breaking £86,000 fine for colliding with another vehicle while driving under the influence

A stony-faced McPartlin outside Wimbledon Magistrates Court before being handed a record breaking £86,000 fine for colliding with another vehicle while driving under the influence 

An artists rending of the presenter in the dock after pleading guilty to a drink driving charge

An artists rending of the presenter in the dock after pleading guilty to a drink driving charge

‘Airbags deployed in the black Mini and a lady came out of the passenger seat. No one came out of the driver seat initially.

‘The lady in the BMW came out but her son stayed in the car. The family in the Mini Cooper also came out and an Asian lady ran and screamed at the driver of the black Mini who was still inside. A passerby was asking her to calm down and checked on everyone to see if everyone was OK.

‘People were checking that everyone was alright. There was a lot of confusion cos the horn remained blaring on the car for ages. Everyone was dazed by it all.

‘When the driver came out, he just shouted intermittently at his mother but didn’t speak to anyone else until the police arrived shortly. There were two dogs in the Mini.’

The star was already in the midst of a troublesome year having sought treatment for an addiction to painkillers and confirmed his separation from wife Lisa Armstrong.

But worse was to follow, with ITV cancelling Saturday Night Takeaway so he could enter residential rehabilitation for a second time. 

A statement on behalf of McPartlin and presenting partner Declan Donnelly confirmed he was taking a break from his on-screen duties.

It said: ‘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 upturn would come in January 2019 - 10 months after his fall from grace - with an emotional return to work as Britain's Got Talent auditions got underway in London (pictured)

The upturn would come in January 2019 – 10 months after his fall from grace – with an emotional return to work as Britain’s Got Talent auditions got underway in London (pictured)

McPartlin was moved to tears as he embraced presenting partner Declan Donnelly while those in attendance at the London Palladium gave him a rousing welcome

McPartlin was moved to tears as he embraced presenting partner Declan Donnelly while those in attendance at the London Palladium gave him a rousing welcome

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'I thought he was DEAD!': Doctor feared Ant McPartlin had been killed in crash that left her son, nine, screaming 'I'm dying, mummy' as BGT star says sorry after record £86,000 drink-drive fine

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McPartlin was later handed a record £86,000 drink-drive fine – thought to be the highest fine ever handed out by a British court for drink driving, topping the £54,000 fine given to footballer Yaya Toure in 2016 for the same offence.

District Judge Barbara Barnes told him: ‘You were struggling with personal problems and issues with alcohol and that had been going on for some months.

‘Your level of driving was unacceptable that day. You recognise you have let down so many people, your friends, family and colleagues.’

Asked how long it would take to pay the massive £86,000 fine, McPartlin’s barrister said: ‘Two to five days’.

His lawyer Liam Walker had told the court: ‘Anthony McPartlin is sorry and is doing everything he can to ensure this never happens again.

‘He hopes that in time he can make himself better and that he might be forgiven by all of the many people he knows and he feels he has let down terribly.’

Wimbledon Magistrate’s Court heard McPartlin’s mother, Christine Woodhall, was in the car with him at the time.

He had been seeking help for ‘alcohol and emotional issues’ at the time, but was in the midst of ‘a brief relapse’, which his mother did not know about.

As he left court after being given the fine, he told reporters: ‘I let myself down. I let a lot of people down and for that I’m truly sorry.’

The positive public reaction would be measured in awards, with McPartlin and Donnelly adding their impressive tally of 42 National Television Awards by winning the category for most popular TV presenter in 2021, 2022 and 2023

The positive public reaction would be measured in awards, with McPartlin and Donnelly adding their impressive tally of 42 National Television Awards by winning the category for most popular TV presenter in 2021, 2022 and 2023

The pair looked visibly emotional, with McPartlin seen clutching Anne-Marie's hand as they won the award in 2021

The pair looked visibly emotional, with McPartlin seen clutching Anne-Marie’s hand as they won the award in 2021

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NTAs 2021 WINNERS: An emotional Ant McPartlin clutches new wife Anne-Marie Corbett's hand as he and Declan Donnelly scoop Best Presenter award for the 20th time while This Morning triumph again as they lead the victors during the glitzy bash

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McPartlin’s recovery would be slow, with Holly Willoughby taking his place alongside long-term presenting partner Declan Donnelly for the following series of based reality show I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! 

The upturn would come in January 2019 – 10 months after his fall from grace – with an emotional return to work as Britain’s Got Talent auditions got underway in London. 

Indeed, he was moved to tears as those in attendance at the Palladium gave him a rousing welcome. 

He told the audience: ‘Oh god, I’m really, really emotional now. I’ve missed you all What a lovely welcome. What a great show to come back to. I’m thrilled, I’m over the moon. Shall we crack on before I cry?’

Simon Cowell added: ‘Ant welcome back. We missed you; it wasn’t the same. I mean even though Dec was brilliant, it still wasn’t the same. 

‘It would be like me not being with David, I would be happy, but not happy – if that makes sense. So on behalf of all of us, welcome back, we’re family.’ 

A source told : ‘Going back on stage was really emotional for Ant. He’s delighted to be back with Dec and excited for the BGT series ahead. 

‘The reaction from the crowd today was extremely positive. They gave him a standing ovation.’ 

The positive public reaction would be measured in awards, with McPartlin and Donnelly adding  their impressive tally of 42 National Television Awards by winning the category for most popular TV presenter in 2021, 2022 and 2023. 

On a personal front the presenter was able to move on from his acrimonious divorce and its subsequent settlement – understood to be in the region of £31million.

McPartlin married former PA Anne-Marie Corbett at St Michael's Church in Hampshire on August 7, 2021

McPartlin married former PA Anne-Marie Corbett at St Michael’s Church in Hampshire on August 7, 2021 

The presenter is beginning a new chapter after welcome his first child with Anne-Marie.

The presenter with pregnant wife Anne-Marie during a night out in April 2024, shortly before she gave birth to his first child 

McPartlin confirmed his engagement to former PA Anne-Marie Corbett in January 2021 after proposing on Christmas Eve, three years after they were romantically linked. 

A friend told The Sun: ‘Ant has been planning this for some time – but wanted to make sure the moment was just right.

‘He’s a traditionalist, so got down on one knee after first checking with Anne Marie’s family that he had their blessing. It was super-romantic, and obviously Anne-Marie said “yes” straight away.

‘Obviously getting engaged in the midst of a pandemic isn’t ideal when it comes to planning a wedding… at the moment a summer ceremony is looking extremely unlikely, so it may well be a 2022 affair.’ 

However the wedding would come sooner than expected, with the couple exchanging vows at St Michael’s Church in Hampshire just eight months after his Christmas proposal. 

The wedding was attended by a host of famous faces including Phillip Schofield, Stephen Mulhern, Alesha Dixon, Christine and Frank Lampard and Dermot O’Leary. 

McPartlin with ex-wife Lisa Armstrong on their wedding day in 2006. The former couple divorced 12-years later, in 2018

McPartlin with ex-wife Lisa Armstrong on their wedding day in 2006. The former couple divorced 12-years later, in 2018

Now, McPartlin begins a new chapter after welcome his first child with Anne-Marie

Now, McPartlin begins a new chapter after welcome his first child with Anne-Marie

Now, McPartlin begins a new chapter after welcome his first child with Anne-Marie. 

The baby is his first, while Anne-Marie has two children, Poppy, and Daisy, from her previous marriage.

After confirming her pregnancy, a source told The Sun: ‘This is the news everyone wanted. Ant and Anne- Marie are beyond delighted. 

‘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.

‘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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