Stephanie Davis has said Ant McPartlin is “not a bad person at all” after the TV star pleaded guilty to drink-driving.

The Britain’s Got Talent star was fined £86,000 on Monday and banned from driving for 20 months after crashing his car while more than twice the legal alcohol limit.

Ant McPartlin court caseAnt McPartlin arriving at court (Steve Parsons/PA)

Former Hollyoaks and Celebrity Big Brother star Davis, who has been open about her own battle with alcohol addiction, said McPartlin has suffered from the stigma surrounding alcoholism.

She told BBC Radio 5 Live: “Because of the industry he’s in and how high up he is and how much the stigma is around addiction, he would have had a lot of people advising him, ‘You can’t come out as an alcoholic, you can’t come out with an addiction of any sort. It’s Britain’s Got Talent, how terrible that would look, the stigma around it’.”

McPartlin, who is in rehab, also sought treatment last year and returned to work on Britain’s Got Talent.

Davis said that when she saw him “quickly put back into work” after rehab, “I felt for him because I know what that’s like also, to be pushed back on to the stage when you’re not ready and you don’t want to”.

“So I kind of knew it would come, I knew that wasn’t his rock bottom. But obviously what happened recently, he should just be happy now to move forward.

“No-one got hurt, that was his rock bottom. It might seem terrible now but he’s on the road to recovery now, he’s at rehab.

“He’s not a bad person at all, he’s worked with families and kids. People in recovery aren’t bad people, we’ve just made bad choices whilst under the influence.”

McPartlin pleaded guilty to driving with 75 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35.

Speaking on the court steps following sentencing, he said: “I just want to say I’m truly sorry for what happened.

“High standards are expected of me, I expect them of myself. I’ve let myself down, I let a lot of people down. And for that I am truly sorry.

“I’d like apologise to everybody involved in the crash and I’m just thankful no-one was seriously hurt.”