Mark Watson: The Infinite Show comes to the Wyvern Theatre on Friday, May 31.

The comedian, author and perennial panel show guest said: “The show is all about empathy, connections between humans, particularly at the moment when people in the Government cannot agree long enough to run the country.

“It is about mutual understanding and contributing.

“If we look after a small circle a positive change happens in life, like ripples in the stream, the more out and out they go the more it works.”

Naturally, his audience is also promised a rant a minute and plenty of jokes to go with the important message.

“I love the sight of making people laugh,’’ said Mark.

Mark has enjoyed appearing in front of audiences since his schooldays, and once won an accolade called Gabbler of the Year in a school public speaking competition.

Somebody who heard him that day made a shrewd observation: “I remember one of the judges said that I was more stand-up than public speaking!’’

Even so, it was not until Cambridge University – he took a first in English – that his interest in comedy was truly sparked. Like many who went on to fame, he joined Footlights, the theatrical club whose alumni include Stephen Fry, Miriam Margolyes and Simon Munnery.

“I still had no idea that it would be a full time career.”

He has since become a familiar face to millions, thanks not just to stand up but to guest appearances on various TV programmes including Celebrity Mastermind, Have I Got News For You and Never Mind The Buzzcocks.

He recalled of the latter: “It was musical fun but I am not musically talented. I would love to play the piano. Celebrity Mastermind I was up against Lucy Porter - a nightmare quizzer.’’

A gruelling three-week stint on The Island with Bear Grylls in 2017 made him truly grateful for his everyday life. He had been under no illusions about it being anything other than awful, but pressed on.

“It was the sort of thing I did not want to do but it was something I couldn’t not do.

“I would be tormented by regret. In the long view it was a good thing to do. I learned lessons and appreciated my privileged life of wine and shelter.”

He eventually left at the urging of the programme’s health and safety team.

Unlike his time on The Island, his appearance on an entirely different kind of programme, Taskmaster, was something he found thoroughly enjoyable – including being cluster bombed with yoghurt.

“You get to be yourself and explore comedy. It is chance to be out of your comfort zone and I relish that sort of thing.’’

Mark is also a novelist, and one of his works, Dan and Sam, has been optioned as a feature film by Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment.

One of his many Edinburgh Fringe appearances famously involved his putting together a story in collaboration with the audience.

“It was an over ambitious thing, an experiment to see what came out of it. I love exploring everything.’’

Current projects – apart from the major tour which is bringing him to Swindon – include writing for a musical version of classic Russian novel Anna Karenina.

“I had not thought about working on a musical; I know the novel.

“If the stars align we will be doing that next year.”

Tickets for the May 31 Wyvern date cost £22.50. Call 01793 524481 or visit - Flicky Harrison