Ant and Dec stepping down from Saturday Night Takeaway after 20 years

Ant and Dec are leaving Saturday Night Takeaway after 20 series, it has been announced.

The pair have presented the long-running entertainment show, which airs on ITV, since 2002.

On Thursday (18 May), Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly announced that they would be departing the show and taking a “rest” following next year’s series.

“We love making Saturday Night Takeaway, but reaching the milestone of 20 series seemed like the perfect time to pause for a little while and catch our breath,” McPartlin told The Sun.

Donnelly added: “We still have a momentous 20th series to look forward to first so we will do our best to go out (for now) with a bang in 2024.”

The series previously went on hiatus in 2009, returning four years later in 2013. The pair will continue their other projects with ITV including I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here!, Britain’s Got Talent and Limitless Win.

Kevin Lygo, ITV Managing Director, Media and Entertainment, said: “When you think of Saturday night television you think of Saturday Night Takeaway. Over 20 series the show has become a cultural phenomenon, and while we eagerly anticipate what Ant & Dec have up their sleeves for the 2024 series, we completely understand their desire to take a pause, take stock, and think about what the next incarnation of the show might look like.”

Announcing the news on Instagram Thursday (18 May), the pair teased some “very special look-backs” in the new season as well as “very exciting new items”.

In the comments section, fans expressed their disappointment in the news.

“Gutted, I look forward to this on a Saturday night,” one person wrote.

“What will I do with my Saturdays nights after 2024,” asked another.

“Lads you never stop!! You deserve a break, you guys are always on so no doubt you will be on another show anyways, have some much-needed time,” a third commented.