Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly discovered they’re distantly related during Monday’s edition of Ant & Dec’s DNA Journey.
At the end of their two-year experience, hosts Ant, 43, and Dec, 44 – who boast a friendship that spans over three decades – gasped in shock as they found out they both carry the same DNA marker S660.
The presenters also share the same Viking warrior descendant through their fathers’ bloodlines, with delighted viewers branding the news ‘the best thing ever’.
Closer than they thought: Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly discovered they’re distantly related during Monday’s edition of Ant & Dec’s DNA Journey
Walking up a tower, media personality Dec nervously read the results of their DNA tests.
The presenter speeds through the letter: ‘Ant, we’ve discovered your DNA into the deep past and you carry a unique DNA marker called S660.
‘Dec, we’ve traced your DNA into the deep past, and have discovered you also carry the DNA marker S660.’
At a loss for words, Dec shares: ‘So we’ve both got the DNA marker S660. OMG, that’s really surprising!’
Strong bond: Hosts Ant, 43, and Dec, 44, boast a friendship that spans over three decades
Surprised! At the end of their two-year experience, the pair gasped in shock as they found out they both carry the same DNA marker S660
Amazed: At a loss for words, Dec shares: ‘So we’ve both got the DNA marker S660. OMG, that’s really surprising!’
Unsettled by his close pal’s reaction, Ant jokes: ‘That’s brilliant! Wait, are you disappointed?’
Providing viewers with context on the information the duo received, a genealogist explained: ‘There’s only one way to share a DNA marker – and that’s because you’re related.’
‘Recently, a Viking age warrior’s Skelton has been dug up in Dublin. He was in his late 20s, and died over 1000 years ago.
‘What’s amazing to me is that when his DNA was analysed, it was shown he carried the S660 marker – the same marker that Ant and Dec carry.
Lifting the lid: A genealogist provided viewers with context on the information the duo received
What a small world: The presenters also share the same Viking warrior descendant through their fathers’ bloodlines
‘This warrior is directly related to them, in the father line. He’s the first one warrior we’ve ever found in the world with the S660.’
Wrapping up their DNA journey, Ant enthused: ‘Its been two years, we started out in Newcastle and here we are now… cousins!’
Alongside a cheery snap, the pair later took to Twitter to reflect on the past two years: ‘Wow… our #DNAjourney has been a totally mind-blowing experience, and we hope you enjoyed it as much as we did making it!
‘We still jump every time the phone goes in case it’s another “DNA Alert”!’ they added.
Relatives: Wrapping up their DNA journey, Ant enthused: ‘Its been two years, we started out in Newcastle and here we are now… cousins!’
‘It’s been a mind-blowing experience’: The duo later took to Twitter to reflect on the past two years, alongside a cheery snap
Delighted fans were over the moon to found out Ant and Dec’s relation, with some even branding the discovery ‘the best moment of my life’.
They penned: ‘Ant & Dec being related (cousins) is the BEST NEWS EVER makes total sense and more profound ❤#DNAjourney.
‘Ant and Dec are Cousins!!!! I’m so happy for them#DNAjourney #AntAndDecsDNAJourney @antanddec.
‘Finding out that ant and dec are actually related has made my day☺️@antanddec #DNAjourney.
‘Best news ever’: Delighted fans were over the moon to found out Ant and Dec’s relation
‘not to be dramatic but ant and dec being related is the best thing that has ever happened, LITERAL SOULMATES #DNAJourney.
‘I got so excited finding out that Ant & Dec are related, what a brilliant ending finding out you’re related to your best mate #DNAjourney.
‘not to be dramatic but finding out @antanddec are related may be the best moment of my life #DNAJourney.
‘They ARE related,that explains the http://bond.So happy #DNAjourney Must have been hard to keep that secret for so long.
On cloud nine: Some even branded the discovery ‘the best moment of my life’
‘OH MY DAYS LITERALLY CRYING ONLY THESE 2 COULD BE BEST FRIENDS FOR YEARS AND THEN FIND OUT THERE RELATED. @antanddec #DNAjourney.’ [sic]
For the show, I’m A Celeb hosts Ant and Dec embarked on a two-year journey with expert genealogists and historians to follow their maternal and paternal blood lines, and eventually meet their long-lost family members.
During Sunday’s edition of the series, Ant candidly discussed his past addiction struggles and how it impacted his friendship with Dec.
Newcastle-born presenter Ant – who admitted himself to rehab after he was arrested for a drink-driving conviction last year – revealed he decided to take a step back from work to ‘repair’ his relationships, especially with ‘supportive’ Dec.
The pair kicked off the task in 2017, but the documentary was halted for two years while Ant took a break from work to battle his addiction to alcohol and prescription drugs. He admitted himself to rehab for further treatment.
Reflecting on his return to the spotlight, Ant admitted: ‘A lot has happened in those two years.’
When asked about what he’s been up to during his time away from his career, the BGT star joked: ‘Not a lot! Just a little break, you know’.
Dec recalled: ‘The last thing I remember was we got a DNA alert while in Ireland telling us we had to go to New York which was very exciting news, then life took a bit of a turn and we didn’t make it to New York.’
‘He’s been a very kind man who was supportive of me’: During Sunday’s show, Ant candidly discussed his past addiction struggles and how it impacted his friendship with Dec
As they prepared to continue their DNA journey in the Big Apple, Text Santa star Ant discussed how his issues not only affected him personally, but also had an impact on his friendship with Dec.
‘The last few years have been quite emotional, hard. They’ve been testing I would say in terms of how strong your friendship is’, Ant explained.
Former Pop Idol host Dec shared his thoughts on the slight fracture in their relationship as he confessed he was ‘disappointed and angry’ that Ant didn’t reach out to him for help.
He elaborated: ‘It’s been a tough couple of years, it’s really tested the bond that we’ve shared since we were 13 years old.
Stronger than ever: The dynamic duo’s frank discussion left viewers in ‘tears’ as ITV star Ant enthused his close friend ‘means the world to me’
‘I was incredibly angry at the start, so angry, disappointed in him that he didn’t ever come to me and say, “I’m struggling, I need you”.
‘If the shoe was on the other foot, I would have gone to him and said, “I’m in trouble, I can’t handle this and I need your help”. He never came to me and that hurt me a lot.’
Dec admitted he was ‘filled with fear’ at the thought of no longer having Ant by his side.
‘There was a point where I thought that that was it,’ Dec said. ‘There were times where I wasn’t sure it was going to survive.
Reflection: The pair kicked off the task in 2017, but the documentary was halted for two years while Ant took a break from work to battle his addiction to alcohol and prescription drugs
‘Times where you didn’t know it needed to survive or you wanted it to survive.
‘All the while he was away I wasn’t sure where his head was at or if he was going to say “none of this is for me”.
Dec later realised he was ‘feeling selfish’, and wanted to be compassionate towards his friend.
After a lengthy stint away from the spotlight, Ant returned to television, hosting this year’s series of Britain’s Got Talent and will return to the Australian jungle on Sunday.
‘I was disappointed and angry’: Former Pop Idol host Dec shared his thoughts on the slight fracture in their relationship
In their element: The pair’s documentary saw the duo travel far and wide (pictured in a village in County Leitrim, Ireland)
Upcoming: The famous duo are set to host I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! together for the first time in two years on Sunday