Alexander Armstrong, the Pointless host, gave a special mention to Stevenage on a popular BBC panel show over the weekend.

Armstrong was guest presenting an episode of Have I Got News For You, broadcast on Friday, October 13, when he joked about Stevenage.

Alongside Armstrong were regulars Ian Hislop and Paul Merton, and guest panellists Olivia Utley and Miles Jupp.

They were talking about the recent Labour party conference, at which leader Sir Keir Starmer said that a Labour government would construct 1.5 million new homes.


He promised to "build the next generation of Labour new towns".

Armstrong joked: "Yes, Keir Starmer wants to recreate the heady atmosphere of the new towns - the sunlit uplands of Stevenage, Crawley, Milton Keynes ..."

After going through a roll call of new towns, Merton then revealed that he had been in charge of a scheme for "new and expanded towns" while he worked in the civil service. 

He said that this had involved work on towns such as Hastings, and he recognised Welwyn Garden City as another new town after it was mentioned by Armstrong.

It is not the first time Stevenage has been the butt of a joke on the popular BBC show.

Last year, Sharon Taylor, the then leader of Stevenage Borough Council, criticised comedian Jon Richardson for making a "silly, cheap, stereotypical jibe" about the town.

Talking about a prankster who had laid out a 'Welcome to Luton' sign at Gatwick Airport, Richardson said: "Obviously, it goes without saying we are not taking cheap shots at the people of Luton.

"Many people would be delighted to see a 'Welcome to Luton' sign, particularly if you've just left Stevenage."

You can watch last week's episode on BBC iPlayer.