Countdown celebrates 25 years on air

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A host of famous Countdown fans have sent personal greetings to the Channel 4 show, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary today (2/11).

Prime Minister Gordon Brown congratulated the teatime quiz, which was the first show to air on Channel 4 when it launched in 1982.

He added: ‘It’s done more than any other programme to make counting and spelling fun and popular and is really good exercise for the mind.’

Mr Brown paid special tribute to resident number cruncher Carol Vorderman, who has been on the show since it started.

‘I wish she could have helped on some of my budgets when I was Chancellor – I might have got the sums right more often!’

Sir Alex Ferguson, Lord Attenborough and Sir Patrick Moore are among those to echo the PM’s sentiments, sending personal video messages for a special 25th anniversary show tonight.

The show is currently presented by comedian Des O’Conner.

Richard Whitely, who died in 2005, presented Countdown for more than 20 years. Des Lynam took over, only to quit over the lengthy commute from his home in Sussex to the Leeds studio.

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