Anne Robinson explains all about turning Countdown co-host Rachel Riley's mic off

·2-min read
Anne Robinson insists Rachel Riley's microphone was off at times during Countdown because the outgoing presenter needed 'some quiet' credit:Bang Showbiz
Anne Robinson insists Rachel Riley's microphone was off at times during Countdown because the outgoing presenter needed 'some quiet' credit:Bang Showbiz

Anne Robinson insists Rachel Riley's microphone was off at times during 'Countdown' because the outgoing presenter needed "some quiet".

The 77-year-old star recently announced she is stepping down from the Channel 4 game show, but Anne has insisted there is no feud between her and co-host Rachel, or lexicographer Susie Dent.

When asked if she thinks Countdown's on-screen talent hadn't got on behind the scenes, Anne told 'Piers Morgan Uncensored': "No, I think Susie Dent is great.

"Rachel Riley is completely brilliant at the maths ... I didn't not get on, but some performers like a lot of noise around them before they go on air and others like me who are trying to get the contestants to remember what their hobbies are would like some quiet while she's doing that ... it was important to me we took her mic off."

Earlier this month, Anne branded rumours of a feud between her and Rachel "nonsense".

She said: "The way that it’s filmed is so tight that ... we don’t have time to talk to each other.

"Between shows we have a ten-minute turn around to get changed. We can go for almost a whole run without doing more than waving to each other from the end of a corridor.

"I’m not saying I would go on holiday with Rachel Riley, but she is brilliant

"Absolutely honestly, I do admire her - she is really, really good at what she does, as is Susie Dent.

"Look, Rachel has just come back from having a baby and she is standing throughout and faultless, whereas I get to sit down.

"She is noisy, yes she and Susie both are - they are a formidable pair those two."

Anne - who took over her 'Countdown' role from Nick Hewer in 2021 - recently admitted she is leaving the show to spend more time with her family.

She said in a statement: "I’ve had a blast hosting this wonderful show. And I stayed longer than I signed up for. Now it is time for an older woman to take the reins.

“I hope too I’ve encouraged TV bosses to realise that not all women at the wrong end of their seventies are in care homes playing bingo and watching conjuring tricks.

"In fact the genius of Countdown is that it’s a brilliant way to keep the brain exercised. I run 5k most days of the week.

“And I can now do an anagram at twice the speed I could this time last year.

"But I have grandchildren, a large garden and a home in New York, all deserving more of my attention.”

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