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The Chase boss reveals major change made to the hit gameshow

The six Chasers from 'The Chase': Shaun ‘The Barrister’ Wallace, Darragh “The Menace” Ennis, Anne “The Governess” Hegerty, Paul ‘'The Sinnerman'’ Sinha, Jenny ‘The Vixen’ Ryan and Mark ‘The Beast’ Labbett (L-R)
The Chase was going to be very different from what we watch now. (Image credit: ITV)

The award-winning gameshow The Chase has become an iconic part of British TV, but before it first aired in 2009, a huge change was made to the format we know today.

Just weeks before it first aired, ITV boss Alison Sharman claimed that The Chase was boring and needed a major shakeup to the format.

Entertainment executive producer Sue Allison spoke more about the changes that were made to the quiz show with David Bodycombe and Justin Scroggie on their TV Show and Tell podcast (opens in new tab).

She said: "It was just quite slow, quite slow going up the board, it was a long time until the Chaser came out and all of that. At the end of it, she said 'Well, I think our viewers will be bored to tears if we put that out. I think we need to change it!' We were like, 'Oh my god'. Literally, we were a couple of weeks out."

This issue resulted in the birth of the notorious cash builder used today and last-minute changes to the set were also made.

Anne Hegerty on Beat the Chasers

Anne Hegerty, aka 'The Governess' is one of the most famous Chasers. (Image credit: ITV)

"That was when the cash builder was invented, and it was much better and the offers and all of that, it was good. It was a really good thing that happened and those changes that were made," she continued.

"If you look at the set, where they come and stand for the cash builder, it's like a sort of nowhere place. In between the contestant area and the board and they just stand there and they're back by moving lights or whatever – but it's a bit nothing-y, isn't it?

"If you think about it, that's because we hadn't designed the set with that in mind. That change was made, it was too late to do anything about it... [It] makes me laugh when I see international versions and they have the opportunity to build their new set and they still don’t have a place for that!"

The Chase airs weeknights at 5pm on ITV.

Grace Morris
Grace Morris

Grace is a digital writer with WhatToWatch.com, where she writes series guides for must-watch shows and the latest TV news. She graduated from Anglia Ruskin University in 2020 with a degree in Writing and Film Studies, which only made her love for creative writing, film and TV grow stronger.


You'll usually find her watching the drama unfold in the latest reality series and much-loved soaps (usually with chocolate by her side!). Grace also likes to explore new places with her friends and family and, of course, watch and read about the latest films and TV series.