Driffield News

Jason sits in Mastermind’s famous big black chair

A former Driffield School student and avid quizzer had the privilege of sitting in one of television’s most famous chairs and finished second answering questions on some of his home county’s most famous waterways.

Jason Hill, whose parents live in Garton-on-the-Wolds, took part in episode 22 of long-running BBC television quiz show Mastermind, which aired on 7th February.

Grilled by Clive Myrie, who recently replaced John Humphrys as host of Mastermind, Jason answered questions on ‘The Rivers of Yorkshire’, which included posers on Howsham Mill, the subject of a BBC Restoration Village programme in 2006, the Nidd at Knaresborough and the source of the River Aire, at Malham Tarn.

I’ve been lucky enough to appear on The Chase, The Weakest Link and Pointless, but in no other show do you have the fun of learning and revising for your specialist subject.

JASON HILL

He scored 10 points on his specialist subject and six in the general knowledge section of the programme, which took him to second place behind Ashleigh Evans, who totalled 18 on the specialist subject of Madonna.

“Sitting in the famous black chair was a dream come true,” said Jason, who moved away from the Driffield area in the early 2000s, but is regularly back visiting family and enjoying summer dips in the River Hull.

“I’ve been lucky enough to appear on The Chase, The Weakest Link and Pointless, but in no other show do you have the fun of learning and revising for your specialist subject.

“Being Yorkshire born and bred certainly helped in remembering facts about waterways in the region.

“Though I do regret never going to Kelham Island on the River Don in Sheffield, for a beer or two, knowing about that would’ve helped.

Jason on Eggheads

“But as a keen swimmer, I’ve had dips across all parts of Yorkshire, from Janet’s Foss to Frodingham Beck, so having a passion for exploring northern waterways made perfect sense behind choosing it as a subject

“As part of the application process, you have to offer up a number of topics.

“I also proposed the cartoon strip, Calvin and Hobbes, as well as the band The Killers, for subsequent rounds.”

Jason’s performance on Mastermind was not the first time he has been successful in front of the television cameras.

Appearing on quiz shows has almost become a habit for him and many will be favourites of readers of the Wolds Weekly.

The full list of those he has appeared on are as follows:
December 2007 – Weakest Link
February 2010 – Eggheads
April 2011 – Pointless (Won £3,000)
March 2013 – The Chase
December 2013 – Show me the Telly
April 2014 – 15 to 1
August 2014 – The 21st Question (Won £2,000)
January 2015 – The Fanatics
November 2015 – Pick Me!
April 2016 – Tipping Point (Won £10,000)
May 2017 – 15 to 1
December 2017 – Countdown

Jason is already looking for his next opportunity to try and outwit the quizmaster.

“My television quiz appearances go back quite a way, to 2007, when I met Anne Robinson and had an embarrassingly early exit,” said Jason.

“I’ve definitely improved along the way, due to playing in the Quiz League of London and hosting charity quizzes.

“Having a keen interest in books obviously helps, I studied English at university and I’ve been in charity communications for a number of years.

“I now work for the social justice charity, St Giles.

“My biggest quiz successes have been winning Tipping Point, Pointless and The 21st Question.
“I have been very fortunate with the questions, for sure.

“I didn’t do quite so well on Countdown though and got trounced by a lovely postgraduate mathematician, Bradley Horrocks.

“I’ve always enjoyed watching television quizzes, going back to the days of Blockbusters and William G Stewart hosting 15 to 1, so it’s been a lifelong ambition.

“I like spreading the word about how much fun it is to appear on television and meet the hosts.

“It was a real hoot learning about Yorkshire rivers too, with flashcards and maps.

“My partner Helen was very supportive and patient with all my preparation.

“In terms of my next challenge, that would be telling, with contestant agreements restricting what you are allowed to disclose, but I’m always on the lookout for new challenges.

“However, I would like to give BBC Radio 4’s Brain of Britain a go, for sure, if I had the chance.”

To watch the show, visit bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m0014bjg/mastermind-202122-episode-22.

For more details about Jason’s appearances on television quiz shows, visit questionplease.co.uk.

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