Anne Robinson confirmed as new Countdown host - becoming first female lead in show's history

Anne Robinson has been confirmed as the new host of Channel 4 game show Countdown (Photo: Channel 4/Twitter)

Anne Robinson has been confirmed as the new host of Channel 4 game show Countdown.

The television presenter - known for her role as the The Weakest Link host - will replace Nick Hewer, who announced he was leaving the show last year, after joining in 2012.

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Robinson, 76, is the first woman to lead the show in its long-running history, with Rachel Riley continuing to run the letters and numbers, and Susie Dent remaining in the dictionary corner.

The announcement was made on Monday (15 Feb), during the Channel 4 daytime show Steph’s Packed Lunch.

Shortly before the announcement, the Steph’s Packed Lunch Twitter page tweeted: “The #countdown conundrum has been set so now it’s over to you - who do you think is the show’s new host? We’ll reveal the answer on #PackedLunchC4. Tune in now @Channel4!”

A few social media users guessed the conundrum correctly, with one tweeting: “So excited!! Anne Robinson is the perfect choice.”

Another added: “She will be perfect for this.”

Channel 4 tweeted: “It's official! #AnneRobinson is to take helm of @C4Countdown, when @Nick_Hewer steps down later this year. Anne will be the series’ sixth host, and the first female to fill the hot-seat joining @RachelRileyRR & @susie_dent”.

‘I am beyond thrilled to be joining Countdown’

During her interview on Steph’s Packed Lunch, Robinson said that she was “thrilled” to be joining Countdown, but that she won’t be portraying the harsh persona she became synonymous with on The Weakest Link.

She said: “I really have been practicing to be nice, not always successfully, but I am going to tone down my nastiness."

“I am beyond thrilled to be joining Countdown. The show is almost as old as I am and just as historic,” Robinson added.

In regards to working with Dent and Riley, the new countdown host said she is “particularly excited to be working alongside the Show’s two other formidable women.”