SCOTS viewers were left stunned last night after contestants on University Challenge came up with a unique answer to a question about a “large island in the Firth of Clyde”.
The BBC show saw teams of boffins from the University of Exeter face off against Imperial College London, reports our sister title The National.
The Exeter team won a set of three bonus questions on the topic of geology. The first question asked about James Hutton, the “father of modern geology” who proposed that clues about the earth’s ancient past could be read in rock formations.
Next, host Jeremy Paxman asked: “The village of Lochranza is the site of a geologic unconformity that helped confirm Hutton’s principle. On which large island in the Firth of Clyde is it located?”
After conferring, the Exeter University team thought the answer could be “Govan”.
Gerry Hassan commented: “The four students from Exeter University on #UniversityChallenge think that ‘Govan’ is an island in the Firth of Clyde. And they pronounced it in a very strange and exotic way.”
He later quipped: “Anyone located the island of ‘Go-van’ in the Firth of Clyde? Maybe it is a bit like Atlantis.”
Govan – pronounced to rhyme with oven – is a former burgh which now forms part of Glasgow.
Arran is Scotland’s seventh largest island, sitting in the Firth of Clyde between Kintyre and the Ayrshire coast.
Lochranza, which sits on its northern tip, is the home to the Arran Distillery and is known for its unique geology and abundant wildlife.
It’s not the first time those Exeter students have been left a little red-faced after struggling with a Scottish question on the show.
While facing off against Manchester last summer, not one of the eight boffins from the two universities could identify Glasgow when shown a picture of the city’s riverfront.