The stars of this year’s Great British Bake Off could be the most entertaining yet as the group boasts a real life hairy biker, a sexy witch and a signed author.
The names of the 2019 line-up were announced yesterday ahead of the Channel 4 show’s big launch on 27 August.
Paul Hollywood will be returning as a judge along with Prue Leith, and hosts Noel Fielding and Sandi Toksvig .
As we get ready for a new season of bread, biscuits and cake, there’s plenty to learn about this diverse bunch before they start whipping up showstoppers.
This year’s cast are younger than in previous years, with seven of them in their twenties and the oldest coming in at 56.
There’s a vet, a geography teacher and a waiter among the line-up and they’re all seriously good in the kicthen.
Amelia, 24, who lives in London works as a clothing designer and regularly shares snaps of her works.
This creative gal originally hails from Halifax, and as well as designing sportswear, she’s also been responsible for creating her own underwear, swimwear and more.
Helena, 40, is a self-proclaimed Goth and aspiring witch. She runs her own fashion and accessories business in Leeds and most of her creations have a Halloween theme.
She’s even written her own book about being a witch, An Introduction To Witchery, making her the second professional author in this year’s Bake Off.
Helena warns: “I am witchy and gothic with a Halloween twist.”
After working for a tech company, Priya, 33, recently quit her job to focus on her career as an author after signing a lucrative deal with Penguin.
Her book, The Good Indian Girl’s Cooking School, is a fictional tale about young British Asian girls leaning to cook.
She wrote of her publishing deal: “‘If you had told me a year ago (when I’d started writing) that I’d be spending the day at Penguin, surrounded by books…
“And sitting with the CEO of Penguin UK for lunch having a good natter about MY book, I wouldn’t believe you.
“Not in a million years. I’ve had the most inspiring and exciting day.
“To say it’s been surreal would be an understatement!.”
Alice, 28, works as a geography teacher in London and regularly treats her students to her baked treats – including a volcano cake.
She takes her love of geography into her personal life as she regularly jets all over the world on luxury holidays.
Phil, 56, is a real life hairy biker who loves to bake. He shares his passion for motorcycles and cakes on his Instagram page, wowing his followers with his incredible culinary creations.
He’s a devoted dad who is always popular when contributing cakes to his daughter’s school. A cake he baked for their Children In Need day, shaped as mascot Pudsey, went down so well the teachers decided not to cut it – but raffled it off instead and made £40 for the charity.
Phil was thrilled!
Jamie, 20, is a part-time waiter from Surrey and he’s partial to posting smouldering selfies online.
Some of his shots show him opting for the camera and showing off his muscled arms.
The sexy telly star also has an equally hunky twin brother and is planning to go to university to study a sports science degree.
He’s been keeping his love of baking a secret from his mates, but it looks like the cat is now well and truly out of the bag.
Jamie said: “My mates don’t know I bake, they’ll get a shock to see me in an apron.”
Currently a student at Durham University, Henry, 20, has wanted to take part in the show since the age of 12, when Bake Off was filmed at the end of his road in Redbridge, East London.
He now tests his skills on his mates at uni where he is studying English literature.
Henry says: “I have wanted to get into the tent since series two. I used to see Paul Hollywood when I walked past the tent to go to school, so to be inside was wonderful.”
David, 36, is a health advisor from Yorkshire and credits his mum with inspiring him to bake.
Thanks to her kitchen expertise, the family never ate a shop-bought loaf when David was growing up.
He’s a keen traveler and when in Malawi the amateur potter learnt to build an oven out of an oil drum and invented a cake that could steam cook over a fire.
Asked what he’d make to signify his happiest day, David said: “My first date with my partner. I’d make a coffee cake shaped like a large cappuccino.”
Shop assistant Steph, 28, from Chester, has a passion for sports and wellness, which inspires her baking.
She tries to make her bakes healthier by adding vegetables or fruit, lowering the refined sugar content and prioritising more nutritional fats.
Admitting to being “very nervous”, Steph said: “It’s beyond anything I can imagine, because I didn’t really dream that I would get in. It has been the most incredible, surreal experience.”
Michael, 26, was taught to bake by his mum mother, who used handwritten recipes passed down from her grandparents.
Born in Newcastle, he considers himself Scottish having lived there as a child and studied in Edinburgh.
His baking is inspired by the flavours of his Indian heritage.
The theatre manager/fitness instructor, of Stratford-upon-Avon, was surprised to be picked, saying: “One night I applied as I was bored.”
A Welsh print shop administrator, Michelle grew up on a farm.
She now lives in Tenby, Pembrokeshire, with her husband and teenage son and bakes almost every other day.
She loves experimenting with flavour combinations and using seasonal vegetables from her own patch plus good quality local produce.
Michelle said of getting into Bake Off: “I was so emotional when I found out. I cry when I am happy and when I am sad. I have wanted it for so long.”
Her passion began aged five when she was given a baking book.
The veterinary surgeon, 28, now lives in Somerset with her husband and bakes through the night to unwind.
Her baking is inspired by her rural surroundings, from orchards to the eggs laid by her ducks and chickens.
She says her colleagues have no idea she’ll be on the show. “They asked would I apply again, and I could honestly answer, ‘no’.”
Tattooed Dan, 38, has fond memories of his mum showing him how to make a sponge and his army chef dad coming to school to teach how to bake bread.
The support worker, of Rotherham, South Yorkshire, loves awe-inspiring bakes – and made his own wedding cake.
If he could get stuck in a lift with a previous baker he’d choose Iain Watters, who was caught up in Baked Alaska-gate. Dan’s verdict: “He was quite a character.”
GBBO returns on August 27, Channel 4, 8pm.
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