British comedians Ant and Dec, Anthony McPartlin, left, and Declan Donnelly, meet Prince Charles.

British comedians Ant and Dec, Anthony McPartlin, left, and Declan Donnelly, meet Prince Charles. Photo: AFP

British comedy duo Ant and Dec scored a surprise singles No. 1 this week with a reissue of a 19-year-old hit, while US star Justin Timberlake clung to the top of the album chart, the Official Charts Company said on Sunday.

Originally released in 1994 under the moniker PJ and Duncan, Ant and Dec's Let's Get Ready to Rhumble went straight to number one after the pair roped in other pop stars to perform the song on their Saturday Night Takeaway TV show last week.

The song, which reached the top 10 in 1994, is the first No. 1 for the pair, who are both aged 37.

The song was a surprise addition to the show, according to Ant McPartlin, who told ITV1's Daybreak programme that they were short of an item for the show.

"We thought, well, we could possibly dust off the old baseball caps, and give it a go, for a laugh," he said.

"The production team on Saturday Night Takeaway went mad, 'oh yeah, we remember that song, let's do it'.

"We thought, 'well, it'll be a bit of a laugh, let's do it'. [We] never expected it would be number one in the midweek charts."

His partner Declan Donnelly said that they only had four hours to rehearse the number.

"We spent an hour, and it all came back to us. We've obviously done it so many times in the past," he said.

The pair said they would donate to charity any money they got from the revived hit.

London-based singer-songwriter Charlie Brown provided the top 10's only other new entry with On My Way at No. 7, the artist's first top 10 hit.

In the album chart Delta Machine by electro-pop pioneers Depeche Mode failed to dislodge Timberlake's The 20/20 Experience from the top of the pile, the album now in its second week at number one.

David Bowie's The Next Day slipped one place to No. 3, while darlings of the New York Indie rock scene The Strokes entered the album chart at tenth place with Comedown Machine. 

Reuters, with Aja Styles