A presenter is a professional TV personality that presents Countdown. There have been 5 major presenters in the history of Countdown, Carol Vorderman, Richard Whiteley, Des Lynam, Des O'Connor and Jeff Stelling. Nick Hewer became the sixth host in 2012
Carol presented every episode, except for a few early episodes when the role of number-checker was split between her and Linda Barrett, and a Christmas special where she was a contestant against Richard Whiteley. Her job was to put up and announce the letters after the contestants requests them. She also wrote down the solutions to the numbers games and often showed the correct solution if the contestants could not solve it. Until 1989, Carol handled the numbers game only, with other hostesses, mainly Cathy Hytner, running the letters game, but latterly she did both. Since the death of Richard, she also introduced the guests instead of Des doing it. She parted company with the show at the end of 2008.
Richard Whiteley, Des Lynam, Des O'Connor and Jeff Stelling have all played the role of Countdown host. Their job is to link between Dictionary Corner and the contestants, by first prompting which contestant is to choose the letters or the numbers, then starting the clock, then asking the contestants for their words or solutions before finally throwing to Dictionary Corner to see if the words are valid. They have five minutes at the beginning of the show, often to read out a poem or a joke, and they also read out the two Teatime Teasers around the breaks. Richard hosted the show between 1982 and 2005, presenting 3959 episodes before he passed away. Des Lynam took over in 2005 and only hosted 303 episodes. Des O'Connor then took over in 2007 and hosted 470 episodes. Jeff Stelling took over in 2009, presenting nearly 700 episodes. Nick Hewer took over from Stelling in 2012, and has presented over 900 episode so far.