View all news

Celebrities line-up for Christmas University Challenge

The Bristol team (l-r): Philip Ball, Laura Wade, Misha Glenny and Iain Stewart

Press release issued: 19 December 2018

Four famous faces from the University of Bristol will be pitting their quizzing prowess against Jeremy Paxman in a special series of University Challenge this Christmas.

A team made up of well-known Bristol alumni will face Brasenose, Oxford, in the first episode on Christmas Eve at 8.30pm on BBC Two.

The Bristol brainboxes are:

  • Misha Glenny (BA 1980), journalist and McMafia author
  • Professor Iain Stewart (PhD 1990), geologist and broadcaster
  • Dr Philip Ball (PhD 1988), science writer
  • Laura Wade (BA 1999), playwright

They will take on the knowledgeable contestants from Brasenose, whose team includes Bargain Hunt expert Kate Bliss and Radio 4's More or Less presenter Tim Harford.

Over 50 prominent alumni from 14 universities and university colleges will compete against each other as they vie for the honour of being crowned series champions.

Look out for the University's very own Professor Mark Horton, an archaeologist and TV presenter, who will be on the buzzer for his alma mater Peterhouse, Cambridge.

Each team will compete in one of seven first round matches, after which the four teams with the highest winning scores will face each other in two semi-finals, with the winners then meeting in the final on 4 January.

Edit this page