Declan Donnelly, the charismatic British television presenter and producer, owes his success and warm personality to the loving foundation provided by his parents, Alphonsus Donnelly and Anne Donnelly.
Born and raised in Newcastle upon Tyne, Declan, or Dec as he is affectionately known, is the youngest of seven children nurtured by Alphonsus and Anne within the community of Cruddas Park. The Donnelly family’s journey began in Desertmartin, Northern Ireland, before they relocated to England in the 1950s, seeking new opportunities and a brighter future.
Dec’s early exposure to the world of entertainment traces back to his formative years. At the tender age of 12, encouraged by his father, he auditioned for the CBBC children’s television programme, Byker Grove.
The Donnelly household, situated in a council estate, became the nurturing ground for Dec’s passion for performance. His role as Duncan in Byker Grove marked the beginning of a remarkable journey in the television industry. It was during this time that he formed a lasting bond with McPartlin, a friendship that would extend beyond their professional collaboration.
Alphonsus and Anne Donnelly provided more than just a home; they created an environment where Dec and his siblings could dream, aspire, and pursue their passions. Their move from Ireland to England was a testament to their determination to provide a better life for their children, instilling in them the values of hard work, resilience, and family bonds.