LEUCHIE House has received a cash boost thanks to the former leader of the Scottish Conservatives’ victory on Celebrity Mastermind.

Baroness Ruth Davidson sat in the famous black chair of the BBC television programme, which was screened on Friday evening.

Her appearance was in aid of the charity, which is based near North Berwick.

The former leader of the Scottish Conservative Party was up against television and radio personality Pat Sharp; comedian, model and TikTok star Fats Timbo; and journalist and food critic Jay Rayner.

Ms Davidson, who finished with a total score of 23 points over the two rounds, was congratulated by host Clive Myrie after taking home first prize and the prestigious Celebrity Mastermind trophy.

Speaking after the programme, she said: “It was more nerve-wracking than I expected it to be.

“They used to do it in front of an audience but when Covid happened they stopped and they quite like the atmosphere without the audience.

“It is a really massive studio in Belfast – all in black apart from the spotlights.

“They make it as intimidating as they can.”



Each of the contestants named their chosen charity, with Mr Sharp playing for Great Ormond Street Hospital, Miss Timbo for Centrepoint, and Mr Rayner in aid of The Food Chain.

Ms Davidson produced a flawless round on her specialist subject of Joan of Arc to score nine points.

However, she revealed to the Courier that the key figure in French history was not her first choice for the round.

She said: “Beyond having done a play about Joan of Arc in high school, which was not yesterday, I did not know very much about her.

“The challenge was they would not do either of my first two choices – the life and work of Dolly Parton or dinosaurs from the Triassic period – I don’t know why we ended up with Joan of Arc!”

The score from the first round put her in the lead ahead of Mr Rayner (seven points on Blossom Dearie), Mr Sharp (four points on The Austin Powers movies) and Miss Timbo (one point on Tina Turner).

East Lothian Courier: Ruth Davidson appeared on Celebrity Mastermind. Image: BBCRuth Davidson appeared on Celebrity Mastermind. Image: BBC (Image: BBC)

On general knowledge, Ms Davidson, who in 2021 was appointed a life peer in the House of Lords, got only two questions wrong: 'What’s the title of the 2023 television crime drama series based on the novels of Mo Hayder that stars Ukweli Roach as Detective Inspector Jack Caffrey?' (Wolf) and 'In the 1847 book written by Frederick Marryat and set during the English Civil War is entitled ‘The Children of the’ what?' (New Forest).

Ms Davidson, who lives near Leuchie House, was full of praise for the charity.

Leuchie House is Scotland's national respite centre, supporting people living with neurological conditions, such as multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s and motor neurone disease, by providing respite breaks and other services.

The former journalist explained that she tried to raise money for a variety of good causes, particularly those based in Scotland.

She added: “Leuchie House is only a couple of miles from my house.

“They are a really nice team.”

Mark Bevan, Leuchie CEO, was delighted with the support.

He said: “We were delighted long-time Leuchie supporter Ruth chose our charity on Celebrity Mastermind and over the moon with her superb performance.

"Guests staying at Leuchie were watching excitedly and cheering her on.

"Great result for Ruth and for Leuchie.

"Ruth’s appearance also gave us the opportunity to reach people who may not know about Leuchie and who we can help.”

The episode can be viewed on BBC iPlayer.