Ant and Dec have admitted they weren't always national treasures and played to some tough crowds in their music days.

The Geordie duo used to perform their hits such as Let's Get Ready To Rhumble as PJ and Duncan, their alter-egos from kids' series Byker Grove, and told Graham Norton it could often be a scary experience, according to Digital Spy.

Dec said: "We played awful venues - night clubs, under-10 discos and truck festivals. The girls would scream and their boyfriends would stand on the balcony and throw ashtrays and ice cubes at us."

The TV presenters, who front Saturday Night Takeaway, Britain's Got Talent and I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!, said that they always put being best pals before anything to do with work.

Ant said: "There is no pressure on us to get on as our friendship comes first and our careers second."

The pair live just around the corner from each other, but reckoned they found it easy to spend so much time together.

Dec said: "We tried living further apart but it didn't work."

Ant and Dec appear on The Graham Norton Show tonight (Friday February 28) on BBC One.