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Holly Willoughby confirms she will replace Ant on I’m A Celebrity

Holly Willoughby has confirmed she will take over Ant McPartlin’s role on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here alongside his partner Declan Donnelly. 

Finally revealing the widely-speculated news on Wednesday, the 37-year-old This Morning frontwoman delightedly said in a statement: ‘I couldn’t be more excited to have been asked to stand alongside Dec for the next jungle adventure…

‘I love Ant and want to send him my best wishes and support for a continued recovery. These are big shoes, not to fill, but just to keep warm for a little bit… 

Happy days: Holly Willoughby has confirmed she will take over Ant McPartlin’s role on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here

‘Honestly, I’m a huge fan of I’m a Celebrity and actually feel like I’ve won a competition to go and hang out on my favourite show! When is it a good time to tell Dec I’m scared of everything that moves?!’

Just days ago, the news was widely-discussed, with insiders telling the Mirror: ‘Holly is 100% confirmed to be going into the Jungle this year as Ant’s stand-in, as speculation continues to mount surrounding the signing…

‘It’s been in the works for weeks as ITV were really keen on getting her in. They’ve taken their time announcing it as they wanted to be sure Holly could fit it in with her family and other work commitments.’ 

Declan meanwhile said: ‘I am hugely grateful to Holly for agreeing to accompany me to Australia this year. She was at the top of my list and I’m thrilled she said yes… 

Way back when: Ant and Dec have presented the show together since its 2002 inauguration and this will be the first time they have been split of the programme in its 16 year history

Way back when: Ant and Dec have presented the show together since its 2002 inauguration and this will be the first time they have been split of the programme in its 16 year history

Pals: Holly extended her best wishes to her pal while Dec admitted he is 'grateful' for her signing (the trio pictured together at the Glamour Women Of The Year Awards in 2016)

Pals: Holly extended her best wishes to her pal while Dec admitted he is ‘grateful’ for her signing (the trio pictured together at the Glamour Women Of The Year Awards in 2016)

‘It will be a different kind of series but we will try our best to ensure it is no less fun and eventful for our loyal viewers…

‘I am also pleased to hear Holly is scared of everything. I am almost stupidly excited at the thought of watching her during the eating trials!’

ITV’s Director of TV, Kevin Lygo added: ‘Holly is a brilliant presenter with a wicked sense of humour who has always enjoyed a great friendship and rapport with Ant and Dec – I have no doubt she will take to Jungle life, if not the critters, really quickly.’ 

Happy days: Finally revealing the widely-speculated news on Wednesday, the 37-year-old This Morning frontwoman excitedly said in a statement: 'I couldn’t be more excited to have been asked to stand alongside Dec for the next jungle adventure'

Happy days: Finally revealing the widely-speculated news on Wednesday, the 37-year-old This Morning frontwoman excitedly said in a statement: ‘I couldn’t be more excited to have been asked to stand alongside Dec for the next jungle adventure’

Little is known of Holly’s salary, yet her pay packet hit headlines last year when it was alleged that her This Morning co-star Phillip Schofield was paid £200,000 more. Following this, it was claimed she then received a pay rise last year. 

Ant and Dec reportedly earn £483,000 each to present the series, yet Holly’s signing wage is unknown. MailOnline has contacted Holly’s representatives for comment.

TV bosses previously confirmed that Ant will be replaced for the forthcoming season and that Declan would not be hosting the show alone.

New pastures: Declan meanwhile said: 'I am hugely grateful to Holly for agreeing to accompany me to Australia this year. She was at the top of my list and I’m thrilled she said yes' (Holly and Dec pictured at the 2015 BRIT Awards) 

New pastures: Declan meanwhile said: ‘I am hugely grateful to Holly for agreeing to accompany me to Australia this year. She was at the top of my list and I’m thrilled she said yes’ (Holly and Dec pictured at the 2015 BRIT Awards) 

Ant and Dec, both 42, were split up for the first time earlier this year after the star suffered a relapse during his addiction recovery and had to take a break from his career to focus on his health.

Following the embattled star’s revelation, fans were left to speculate who would replace him alongside co-host Dec for the show’s 18th series.

While Ant was absent for the final shows of his and Dec’s series, Saturday Night Takeaway, Dec remained at the helm and hosted it by himself.

Embattled: TV bosses previously confirmed that Ant will be replaced for the forthcoming season and that Declan would not be hosting the show alone

Embattled: TV bosses previously confirmed that Ant will be replaced for the forthcoming season and that Declan would not be hosting the show alone

Holiday dun: During Wednesday morning's episode of This Morning, Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford announced the news, while standing in for Holly and her presenting partner Phillip Schofield (pictured together on the show), who are on their summer holidays

Holiday dun: During Wednesday morning’s episode of This Morning, Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford announced the news, while standing in for Holly and her presenting partner Phillip Schofield (pictured together on the show), who are on their summer holidays

During Wednesday morning’s episode of This Morning, Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford announced the news, while standing in for Holly and her presenting partner Phillip, who are on their summer holidays.

As the news was announced online, Eamonn said, ‘Hold it right there, because my wife has got some very exciting breaking news for you…’

Before exciting Ruth replied: ‘I have. It’s exclusive news actually… I can exclusively reveal that our very own Holly Willoughby will be heading down under. She is going to be co-hosting I’m a Celebrity alongside her good friend Dec.’ 

The big reveal: During Wednesday morning's episode of This Morning, Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford announced the news, while standing in for Holly and her presenting partner Phillip, who are on their summer holidays

The big reveal: During Wednesday morning’s episode of This Morning, Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford announced the news, while standing in for Holly and her presenting partner Phillip, who are on their summer holidays

Naturally social media was awash with reaction over the news, as excited viewers penned: ‘I mean I am gutted that @antanddec aren’t reuniting on the telly just yet, obviously! But…. I think @hollywills is going to be great!! #ImACeleb… 

‘@hollywills UH YES I am living for this … Your opinion doesn’t speak for the other millions that watch the show, I’m thrilled it’s Holly! 

‘Yes you’ll complain but you’re still gonna watch it so what’s the point? I bet ratings will be higher than ever to see how Dec and Holly get on!… 

‘Holly Willoughby is a fantastic choice! Watching that!… Fantastic news that @hollywills will be co-hosting this year alongside Dec while Ant takes a break….

Differences: Naturally social media was awash with reaction over the news, as excited viewers penned: 'I mean I am gutted that @antanddec aren’t reuniting on the telly just yet, obviously! But.... I think @hollywills is going to be great!! #ImACeleb'

Differences: Naturally social media was awash with reaction over the news, as excited viewers penned: ‘I mean I am gutted that @antanddec aren’t reuniting on the telly just yet, obviously! But…. I think @hollywills is going to be great!! #ImACeleb’

‘I’m glad @hollywills is doing I’m a celeb, think she will be fab n Holly-ignore any negativity, us wee humans are a bit funny when it comes to change #itv #ImACeleb

Despite the excitment from some fanse, others were less pleased as disgruntled viewers pen: ‘In a statement Holly herself even said “these are very big shoes to fill, but I am only keeping them warm until Ant returns…

‘Stop acting like your world has come crashing down, it’s a show!!.. Ah bless her…she must need the money desperately poor mite… 

‘Should have signed up Bradley Walsh… Holly Willis is a bore, I always watch her on This Morning as it sends me to sleep after a night shift’.

Happy days: 'Should have signed up Bradley Walsh... Holly Willis is a bore, I always watch her on This Morning as it sends me to sleep after a night shift'

Happy days: ‘Should have signed up Bradley Walsh… Holly Willis is a bore, I always watch her on This Morning as it sends me to sleep after a night shift’

 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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