Published: 13:44, 27 August 2019
| Updated: 14:44, 27 August 2019
The Great British Bake Off is back on our screens this week with judges Paul Hollywood, from Kent, and Prue Leith.
And the show's success continues to amaze them.
Paul said: “There’s a lot of celebrities, a lot of people that approach you. It’s crazy. There were a couple of people on Instagram, a very famous American actress, who’d baked something. She sent a video and said, ‘I wonder what Paul Hollywood would say about this?’ And you’re going, ‘What?’
“I also remember getting a call from Ronnie Corbett years ago; he wanted to speak to me, he baked a lot of bread. Keira Knightley... She once tried to bin off a premiere to go and watch the final of the Bake Off!”
Last series it was reported an average live audience of 7.5 million people tuned in to see Rahul Mandal crowned the winner.
One of last year's finalists, Kim-Joy Hewlett is set to visit the county when she signs copies of her new cookbook, Baking With Kim-Joy, on Saturday, September 28.
Back for a 10th season - its third on Channel 4 - judges Paul and Prue will return with presenting duo Noel Fielding and Sandi Toksvig. This year’s hopefuls showcase a younger demographic than most.
“They’re much younger and actually it’s been the hardest year judging, personally, for me, because it was all about detail,” admits Paul.
But it’s not just youthful contestants - those watching at home spans generations, too.
“Baking has become such a cool thing to do - if you can bake, you’ll get friends. Always.”
* Bake Off is on Channel 4 on Tuesdays at 8pm.
More by this authorAngela Cole