Councillor crowned champion on popular daytime quiz show

John Wheeler with his Fifteen to One trophy. Image courtesy of haddenham.net
John Wheeler with his Fifteen to One trophy. Image courtesy of haddenham.net

A parish councillor achieved major success when he won Channel Four’s Fifteen-to-One quiz programme.

John Wheeler, who serves on Haddenham Parish Council, beat 14 other contestants to receive the trophy from the programme host Sandi Toksvig.

Mr Wheeler said: “It was a long day recording the show but a very rewarding one, I thoroughly enjoyed the experience.”

Mr Wheeler is no stranger to quiz shows having previously competed in BBC’s Mastermind and one of the first editions of Pointless.

He said: “I really enjoy competing in quizzes and it’s one of my particular hobbies.

“I play for the Plough pub at Hyde Heath in the Chiltern Quiz League, which runs in pubs around Amersham and Chesham on Tuesday nights during the autumn and winter months.

“And I also like to pit my wits against like-minded souls on the TV quiz shows from time to time.”

In the next month or two Mr Wheeler will appear on another edition of BBC Mastermind.

He said: “The Mastermind programme has already been recorded, but I’m not allowed to tell you how I did - you’ll just have to watch the broadcast!”

Meanwhile Mr Wheeler can enjoy the success of his impressive achievement on Fifteen-to-One.

He said: “Although the auditions were conducted in London, we travelled to the studios in Glasgow for the actual recording.

“The day started at 7am and the final question I answered was at about 11pm - so it does take a long time, and remaining focused over that period can be a bit of a challenge.”

With all his quiz show experience Mr Wheeler, an applied psychologist, has developed his own techniques for success.

He said: “I don’t use any special psychological tricks.

“I just try to remain very focused on the questions, and concentrate on picking out the key elements, given that some of the questions can be rather wordy.

“And during the lengthy periods between recording stages I read such worthy journals as Heat and OK! magazine!

“They don’t compete with Encyclopaedia Britannica but they’re good for keeping up-to-date on contemporary events and celebrity news that can come up in TV quiz shows!”

He said there is no magic formula, but he seems to have an ability to retain information and to recall it quickly.

And he added that it can be fun to indulge in the tactical element of some quiz shows.