I was raised on TV quiz shows… so it’s Impossible not to love hosting job, says Rick Edwards

Rick Edwards (Mighty Productions / Alun Howell)

AS a youngster, Rick Edwards watched every TV game show going with his quiz-mad parents.

Now, Rick is living his dream as the host of his very own primetime BBC1 quiz show.

Impossible has already been a big daytime hit, like Pointless and ITV’s The Chase, pulling in increasingly impressive viewing figures over three lengthy series.

Like those shows, it has been given the ultimate vote of confidence with a promotion to evenings and with celebrities, not members of the public, competing.

Impossible Celebrities sees 18 well-known faces trying to win £10,000 for a charity of their choice.

“I used to watch Countdown, Fifteen To One, University Challenge and lots more with mum and dad,” Rick, 39, told iN10. “It was part of the fabric of growing up.

“My parents are such keen quizzers they run a charity quiz in their village.

“I actually go along and host for them when I can – having a TV quiz show presenter do that works quite nicely for them!

“I did one just a few weeks ago and it’s quite a different experience being in a village hall to doing a TV show.

“There was an old lady who told me she didn’t have her hearing aid with her and then sat right at the back, which made it interesting.

“But they are always good fun and, to be fair, my mum and dad write good questions. I’ve been trying to get them to write some for Impossible.

“We have such a mania for quizzes in this country, more than almost anywhere else.”

Rick in the studio (Mighty Productions / Alun Howell)

In each episode, the celebrities have to avoid giving impossible answers as they battle across three rounds of multiple choice questions.

Rick reckons the naturally competitive instincts of the sportsmen taking part made them among those with the greatest desire to succeed.

But such is the nature of the show he could see everyone getting the itch to win.

The show is filmed at the BBC’s Scottish HQ, Pacific Quay, on the banks of the River Clyde. And having made regular, lengthy visits – there have been at least 90 episodes so far – Rick is starting to regard Glasgow as his second home.

“I really love the city,” said London-born Rick who has hosted numerous shows for Channel 4, ITV and Sky.

“I was up for one of Radio 1’s Big Weekends a few years back and got to know it a bit then.

“We have quite a full-on filming schedule, so I don’t get as much time as I’d like to potter around. But when I have a day or two off I get to check out some of the great restaurants and bars.

“The weather was beautiful the last time I was there and I spent time just sunning myself by the river.

“I’m a big film fan and whenever I can, I go along and see the latest movies. I regard a solo cinema trip as a bit of a treat. It’s the ultimate luxury and doesn’t get better than that.”

Rick married actress Emer Kenny, known for playing Zsa Zsa Carter in EastEnders, two years ago.

She is now one of the mainstays of BBC1’s popular daytime detective dramas Father Brown – as wayward young Bunty Windermere – which is filmed in Gloucestershire.

Their various work commitments can see them at opposite ends of the country and Rick says they simply have to find ways of making it work.

“The new series is filming at the moment and I’ve been to the Cotswolds to spend time with her,” explains Rick.

“In theory, I was writing a script but, in practice, I was enjoying the good weather while she was working hard, sweating away in her bulky 1950s costumes.

“Obviously if we have things on at the same time it’s not possible but normally it dovetails and she has been up to Glasgow with me quite a bit.

“It’s quite useful if you are with someone whose job takes them away that you try to understand it.”

Impossible Celebrities will air on BBC1 later this summer.

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