Page last updated at 15:37 GMT, Friday, 26 March 2010

Countdown celebrates 5,000th episode

Countdown host Jeff Stelling with Susie Dent (l) and Rachel Riley (r)
Stelling (centre) has presented the C4 show since January 2009

Channel 4 quiz Countdown is celebrating its 5,000th episode - something even the Queen is impressed by.

The daytime show has received a letter from Her Majesty's private secretary extending her congratulations on the "significant achievement".

More than 50 series have been broadcast since the words and numbers show made its debut on 2 November 1982.

Former host Des Lyman will appear as a guest on Friday's edition, alongside current presenter Jeff Stelling.

In her letter, the Queen's secretary wrote: "Her Majesty has asked me to say that she was interested to learn of the event and sends her good wishes to you and to everyone involved with the show."

'Dream job'

Rachel Riley and Susie Dent are also regulars on the show, which was fronted for many years by the late Richard Whiteley and Carol Vorderman.

Sports broadcaster Stelling has described hosting the show as his "dream job".

"I get to work with two gorgeous ladies in Rachel and Susie, while chuckling along in private to all the unbroadcastable comments that fill my earpiece from the producer," he said.

Lynam and Des O'Connor both hosted Countdown following Whiteley's death in 2005.

Vorderman's 26 years on the programme came to an end in 2008 following reports she had been asked to take a pay cut.

Last month Premier League footballer Clarke Carlisle competed on the show, seeing off the current champion in the process.

Print Sponsor

Footballer scores Countdown win
24 Feb 10 |  Entertainment
Vorderman clocks off from TV quiz
12 Dec 08 |  Entertainment
Sky host Stelling joins Countdown
21 Nov 08 |  Entertainment
Anger over Vorderman's departure
28 Jul 08 |  Entertainment

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2018 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific