Hosted by Paddy McGuinness


Benchmark” took center stage on Channel 4, entertaining viewers with its unique game show format. Hosted by the charismatic Paddy McGuinness, the show made its debut on June 1, 2015, and continued captivating audiences until December 31, 2015. Against the backdrop of Manchester’s MediaCityUK, “Benchmark” introduced a captivating blend of survey questions and the classic higher/lower element, leaving an imprint on the world of game shows.

The British game show “Benchmark” emerged in 2015, drawing inspiration from established quiz show formats. With survey-style questions reminiscent of “8 Out of 10 Cats” and the strategic higher/lower dynamic akin to “Play Your Cards Right,” the show carved out its identity as a unique and engaging addition to the genre.

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In Round 1, eleven contestants vied for the spotlight, with two facing a qualifying question. The contestant providing the answer closest to the correct one in the qualifying question advanced to play for the grand prize of £25,000.

Round 2 was the focal point of the competition. The qualifying contestant engaged in a strategic battle, facing seven questions with a higher/lower dynamic. The remaining contestants played a pivotal role by offering benchmark answers, collectively forming a money ladder that could potentially climb to substantial sums like £10,000, £15,000, and the ultimate £25,000.


Correct answers allowed the contestant to ascend the money ladder, with the potential for strategic advantages through the “bench bonus” introduced after four questions. The “bench bonus” added a strategic twist, granting the contestant a two-step climb on the money ladder upon successfully answering this bonus question.

In celebrity versions of “Benchmark,” the stakes were raised, with final amounts adjusted to £20,000 and £50,000, intensifying the challenge for contestants and adding an extra layer of excitement for viewers.

Legacy and Impact:
Although “Benchmark” had a relatively short run, its legacy lies in the innovative blend of survey questions and higher/lower dynamics. The show showcased the creative possibilities within British game shows, with Paddy McGuinness’ lively hosting and the unique money ladder concept contributing to its impact. “Benchmark” left an indelible mark as a show that brought both entertainment and strategic gameplay to the forefront of the game show landscape.