BRAINBOXES have put Sunderland at the top of a 30-long list of cities in a quiz challenge.
Researchers hit the streets of Wearside as they challenged residents to answer questions on a host of subjects in a survey and found it is home to some of the best.
The results revealed 71 per cent answering the posers correctly, putting it ahead of Exeter with 68 per cent and Preston at 65 per cent.
The other North East contender in the quiz of quizzes was Newcastle, with its competitors coming in 25th with a score of 43 per cent, the same as Peterborough and Edinburgh, with many of the locations sharing their ranking.
Norwich scored the least number of answers correct, with just 35 per cent of the questions getting a right answer.
Rick Eastman, marketing director of Quizfactor.com, which carried out the research, said: “This was the definitive intelligence test for the UK. Sunderland did very well to come out on top.”
More than 5,000 people completed the UK-wide challenge, which included five questions from the categories of sport, geography and nature, art and literature, science and technology, lifestyle and history and politics.
Questions included how many points are scored for a converted try in rugby union, what is the collective noun for a group of emus and which is the smallest planet in the solar system?
Those who took part then named the nearest city to their home.
The answers are seven, mob and Mercury respectively.
Chris Brewis is secretary of the Sunderland Echo Quiz League, which has seven teams and has previously taken a team to take part in television programmes including Eggheads.
He said: “I’m not at all surprised. The standard of quizzes has risen.
“Our quizzes have got really hard over the years, because there’s no point in doing easy ones, and answers have to be given in 45 seconds, so there’s no cheating.”
The survey also considered whether hair colour has an effect on intelligence levels, challenging the idea that blondes are dumb.
It found that people with fair, black and red hair all scored the same, with 54 per cent of the questions answered correctly.
Those with brunette or grey hair got 53 per cent.