Weird’ to spend 20 minutes apart from Dec, says Ant after pair receive OBEs

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Presenting duo Ant and Dec have admitted it was “weird” to be split up as they were honoured individually for their contribution to television.

The TV hosts collected their fourth gong of the week as they received OBEs at Buckingham Palace on Friday morning.

The pair had already picked up three prizes at the National Television Awards on Wednesday, including the TV presenter award for the 16th year in a row.

TV presenters Ant and Dec and their wives Lisa Armstrong and Ali Astall arrive at Buckingham Palace. (John Stillwell/PA)
TV presenters Ant and Dec and their wives Lisa Armstrong and Ali Astall arrive at Buckingham Palace to be awarded OBEs by the Prince of Wales. (John Stillwell/PA)

Despite building their career based around being a partnership they were separated briefly as they went up to receive their awards from the Prince of Wales, under their real names Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly.

Speaking after being reunited following the accolade, McPartlin said: “It’s normally me that goes first and when they called Dec’s name I thought ‘I’ll watch what he does’.

“Twenty minutes apart, it’s a long time … it was weird.”

TV presenter Declan Donnelly is made an OBE by the Prince of Wales. (Jonathan Brady/PA)
TV presenter Declan Donnelly is made an OBE by the Prince of Wales at Buckingham Palace, London. (Jonathan Brady/PA)

He added: “It’s a huge honour.”

The Britain’s Got Talent presenters were accompanied by their wives – Lisa Armstrong and Ali Astall – to the event and said they would celebrate with a “small glass of champagne” and take their families to lunch.

Donnelly said he hoped receiving the recognition would “inspire” youngsters from working-class backgrounds.

TV presenters Ant and Dec after they were presented with OBEs by the Prince of Wales. (John Stillwell/PA)
TV presenters Ant and Dec after they were presented with OBEs by the Prince of Wales. (John Stillwell/PA)

He said: “You don’t expect things like this to happen to lads like us from the west end of Newcastle so it’s a huge honour.

“We’re humbled and honoured and ecstatic about the whole thing.

“We hope it can inspire young people from backgrounds like ours that things like this do happen to us sometimes.

“Put your head down and work hard and you can achieve what you want.

TV presenter Ant McPartlin is made an OBE during an Investiture ceremony at Buckingham Palace. (Jonathan Brady/PA)
TV presenter Ant McPartlin is made an OBE during an Investiture ceremony at Buckingham Palace. (Jonathan Brady/PA)

“You can end up in Buckingham Palace.”

The pair have already spent a considerable amount of time with the Prince of Wales after interviewing him for a documentary celebrating 40 years of the Prince’s Trust.

When receiving his award, McPartlin said Charles had joked “you survived the documentary then”.

Donnelly added: “It was nice that he was giving us the award today, having spent so much time with him and having followed him around.

“I think we wore him down in the end so it was nice to see him today and nice to get our honour from him.”

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