Ant McPartlin’s touching gesture to best pal Declan Donnelly revealed after he welcomed first child with wife Anne-Marie

PROUD Ant McPartlin told pals he is “beyond thrilled” after yesterday becoming a father for the first time aged 48.

The ecstatic telly host said his beloved baby boy, called Wilder, was “beautiful”, his wife Anne-Marie was a “legend” — and he was a “mess”.

Ant McPartlin made a touching gesture to best pal Declan Donnelly after he welcomed first child with wife Anne Marie

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Ant McPartlin made a touching gesture to best pal Declan Donnelly after he welcomed first child with wife Anne MarieCredit: Rex
Ant confirmed the news with a sweet black and white snap of him holding their newborn

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Ant confirmed the news with a sweet black and white snap of him holding their newbornCredit: Instagram
The happy couple started dating in 2018

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The happy couple started dating in 2018Credit: Getty

Anne-Marie, 46, gave birth just before 9am at the London Clinic — where King Charles and the Princess of Wales recently received treatment.

Insiders said Ant had made his best pal and telly partner Declan Donnelly, 48, the baby boy’s godfather.

Britain’s Got Talent presenter Ant ­shared a photograph of him cradling his newborn on Instagram.

He told his followers: “Welcome to the family. Wilder Patrick McPartlin. Born, 14/05/24 at 8.54am.

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“Baby is beautiful, Mummy’s a legend, Sisters are over the moon. Dad’s a mess!”

The middle name was chosen in tribute to Anne-Marie’s late father, Paddy.

The Sun first revealed in February that Ant and Anne-Marie — who has two daughters from a previous marriage — were going to be parents.

Pals told The Sun how Ant had excitedly spoken about the imminent arrival at the TV Baftas on Sunday night.

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A pal added: “Ant and Anne-Marie are beyond thrilled — their little family is complete. They’ve been overwhelmed with lovely messages from friends, family and fans and are still wading through them. They are incredibly grateful to everyone.

“They chose the name, Wilder, a while ago but have deliberately kept it a closely guarded secret. They are going to be ­absolutely wonderful, doting parents and Ant cannot wait to be a hands-on dad, changing the nappies and just spending time with little Wilder.”

Ant McPartlin’s Joyful Journey into Fatherhood

Ant and Anne-Marie opted to have their baby at the London Clinic in central London, just over seven miles from the home they share with her daughters Poppy and Daisy in Chiswick, West London.

Since he started dating Anne-Marie, Ant has become a devoted stepdad.

In his Instagram baby post, he showed off a tattoo of a family tree — with “Amzie”, his nickname for Anne-Marie, “Poppy” and “Daisy”, and their dogs “Milo” and “Bumble” inked on to his arm.

A friend of the Newcastle United fan added: “Ant has longed to become a dad for years and being a father figure to Daisy and Poppy has brought him untold joy. When Anne-Marie fell pregnant, Ant was over the moon.

Anne-Marie gave birth just before 9am at the London Clinic — where King Charles and the Princess of Wales recently received treatment

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Anne-Marie gave birth just before 9am at the London Clinic — where King Charles and the Princess of Wales recently received treatmentCredit: Ray Collins
Since he started dating Anne-Marie, Ant has become a devoted stepdad

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Since he started dating Anne-Marie, Ant has become a devoted stepdadCredit: Dan Jones images/THESUN

“They knew they were having a boy for some time and Ant is looking forward to taking Wilder to his first Newcastle United game in a few years. He is on cloud nine.”

Ant got together with his personal ­assistant Anne-Marie, below, following his split from Strictly Come Dancing make-up artist Lisa Armstrong in 2017.

His 11-year marriage to Lisa ended in a bitter divorce — handing over £31million of his estimated £50million fortune.

He married Anne-Marie in 2021, with Dec acting as best man.
Ant is also godparent to Dec and wife Ali Astall’s two children, Isla and Jack.

‘CLOUD NINE’

Just before Ant made the news public, Lisa shared a cryptic message on Instagram about staying strong.

She posted: “Be proud of how you’ve been handling these past few months.

“The silent battles you’ve fought, the moments you had to humble yourself, the times you’ve wiped your own tears. Celebrate your strength.”

Ant will now not return to work until May 27 when the BGT live semis begin.

He previously spoke about his desire to have children — and his heartbreaking struggles to conceive with Lisa.

In a moving interview with the Radio Times 12 years ago, before Dec started dating Ali, Ant said: “There’s a rumour that we do everything together and I’m holding off having kids till Dec finds himself Mrs Right. I love that idea, but I’m afraid it’s not true.

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“Lisa and I would love to have kids. We’re trying. It’s tougher than you think when you get a bit older. We’ve wanted children for a while but we’re both busy.

“So Lisa and I are trying for a baby . . . well, we’ve been trying for a little while so fingers crossed.”

Ant’s family tree is finally complete

By Clemmie Moodie

FOR a man whose life has played out so widely on TV – not to mention newspapers, magazines and social media – Ant McPartlin managed to keep one thing quiet: the huge family tree tattoo on his left shoulder.

Unveiling it on Instagram for the first time yesterday – to announce the birth of his newborn son, Wilder – those who know Ant say it reveals all you need to know about the chap.

That behind the TV make-up, celebrity, bulging bank accounts and endless accolades, he is a devoted family man. Family, for Ant, has always come before fame. 

Unable to have children for years, he’d have traded any NTA in the world for a world of nappy-changing.

Finally, after years of yearning, there’s a new sidekick in town – and it’s not Declan Donnelly.

Ant’s second wife, Anne-Marie, and the names of the couple’s two daughters from her first marriage, are pride of place in the newly unveiled inking. As are the couple’s two dogs, Milo and Bumble.

With the birth of his first son, Ant’s family tree is now complete.

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