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four and twenty lovebirds (baked in a pie)

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"Bake Off is, in fact, as much about a secondary discourse played out in the press and social media as it is about the show itself."

--Charlotte Higgins, The Genius of the Great British Bake Off



From: Alexander Seawoll
Sent: 15th July, 2016, 11:12
To: Frank Caffrey; Cecelia Tyburn; Varvara Sidorovna; Oberon Thames; Iya Thames; Effra Thames; Richard Folsom
Cc: Thomas Nightingale; Molly DuFae; Miriam Stephanopolous; Sahra Guleed;
Subject: Final pre-air production meeting of GBBO 2016

Dear All,

Here are the minutes of our last meeting for this coming series of GBBO, which will be airing in four weeks. This meeting's purpose has been to summarise the production details and make sure everyone is on the same page. Key points:

  • Present during the meeting were: Thomas, Molly, Miriam, Sahra, Frank, Ty and Varvara. Joining via phone were Oberon and executive producer Iya.
  • Thomas and Molly reprised their roles as judges. Sahra and Miriam reprised their roles as hosts.
  • Oberon directed 5 episodes, Effra directed 5 + class of 2015 reunion episode.
  • Effra was also chief editor for all episodes
  • Fleet, Cecelia and Richard will be in charge of PR and Marketing 
  • Airing dates will be from August 17th - October 19th, 8PM on Wednesdays on BBC One.
  • As mentioned last week, broadcast might be delayed due to Olympics this year, so our finale will run over the end of silly season. 
  • As Iya said, BBC hopes for the usual show, no drama, no going reality-TV, minimal waterworks. Minimal scandal is okay and to be expected.
  • Confidentiality agreements have been signed by all.

Thanks to all for attending.

Best Regards,
Alexander Seawoll
Creative Director
Folly Productions


From: Thomas [18:40]
Filming that was the longest ten weeks of my life. And that's counting 2002.

From: Molly [18:45]
chin up. at least the worst part is over. now it's just a few more weeks until the show airs.

From: Thomas [19:00]
Yes, in one month's time I get to re-live my mortifyingly sudden lack of emotional self-restraint in High-Definition television accompanied by the running commentary of the nation in form of "retweets".

from: Molly [19:05]
oh god here we go


From: Alexander Seawoll
Sent: 20th July, 2016, 13:59
To: Thomas Nightingale

Hi Thomas,
Why the fuck is there a photo of you and Peter Grant having dinner together? Why does it look like you're on a date? For God's sake, you're not supposed to have contact outside of the show. Do not give Walid another stress ulcer, he does not have the disposition for this shit.

Best Regards,
Alexander Seawoll
Creative Director
Folly Productions


From: Thomas Nightingale
Sent: 20th July, 2016, 14:30
To: Alexander Seawoll


I ran into him and we had lunch, it was no big deal. For goodness' sake, as if I would commit that big a breach of protocol.

What do you mean it looked like we were on a date?

Warmest Regards,
Thomas Nightingale


From: Alexander Seawoll
Sent: 20th July, 2016, 14:40
To: Thomas Nightingale
Attached: DCMI_28109 DCMI_28112 DCMI_28115

I believe you, but it's gonna look bad. We'll need a lot of damage control if this leaks. Might have to unleash the Tyburn.

I mean, it looked like you were on a date.

Best Regards,
Alexander Seawoll
Creative Director
Folly Productions


From: Cecelia Tyburn
Sent: 21st July 2016, 09:21
To: Alexander Seawoll, Thomas Nightingale
Cc: Varvara Sidorovna, Abdul Haqq Walid
Subject: Paparazzi situation

Dear all,

As you might know by now, a candid photo of Thomas and contestant Peter Grant eating lunch together in Russell Square popped up on our radar yesterday afternoon, courtesy of someone who calls himself "Mr. Punch". The good news about the situation is that they won't be able to sell it yet because Peter isn't famous enough to be recognisable. However, the bad news is that they are trying to extort us for money to keep it a secret when the episodes air.

I have consulted with Varvara on the matter, she and I will look into a solution. We will keep you updated.

Best Regards,
Cecelia Tyburn,
Head of Public Relations and Communications
Folly Productions


From: Varvara Sidorovna
Sent: 22nd July 2016 09:21
To: Alexander Seawoll
Cc: Thomas Nightingale, Cecilia Tyburn
Subject: Re: Paparazzi situation

Dear all,
I have taken care of the matter. He will not be contacting any of us ever again. Enjoy your weekends.

Kind regards,
Varvara Sidorovna
Director of Legal & Commercial Affairs
Folly Productions



Alexander Seawoll
to me
July 22nd 09:22

Varvara, what did you do?

Best Regards,
Alexander Seawoll
Creative Director
Folly Productions

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Alexander Seawoll
to me
July 24th 2016 10:39

No, seriously, what did you do to him?

Best Regards,
Alexander Seawoll
Creative Director
Folly Productions

Get Outlook for Android


Alexander Seawoll
to me
July 25th 2016 12:01

Varvara, please answer me. What did you do to him? As long as this won't end up with a dead body, I don't need to know the details, but I need to be prepared. What did you do to him??

Best Regards,
Alexander Seawoll
Creative Director
Folly Productions

Get Outlook for Android

From: Varvara Sidorovna
Sent: 27th July, 2016, 19:58
To: Alexander Seawoll
Cc: Thomas Nightingale, Cecilia Tyburn

He's not the only one with a telephoto lens, Alexander. A few words about him, a certain hotel room and mentions of his wife were all it took. Like I said, I have taken care of it.

Thomas, you should feel free to enjoy Peter's company now that filming is over, but please exercise more discretion in the future.

Kind regards,
Varvara Sidorovna
Director of Legal & Commercial Affairs
Folly Productions



The Guardian
GBBOs 2016 line-up shaping up to be the most diverse so far in the show's history

Daily Mail Online
Is this series of Bake Off contestants really representative of the British public? 



Meet the Contestants of Bake Off 2016

By Tista Gosh

Peter Grant, 28 - Peter is an architect for the City of London and describes himself as an experimental baker in the most literal sense - he has a habit of fiddling with the science side of things, using his precision skills from his job to experiment with new methods. He likes to challenge himself to use alternative methods to achieve the same results. His Sierran Leonan heritage is often infused in his recipes.

Lesley May, 29 - Originally from Brightlingsea, Lesley works as an accountant in Essex and sticks to old-school baking 'with a twist'. She is a methodical baker and seeks technical perfection in her products, holding them to professional sellable standards. She loves modernising classical British bakes by giving them her own modern flavour.

Beverley Brook, 24 - Beverley works as an environmental activist in Brighton and often makes her treats for charity events. She likes using organic, locally-farmed ingredients and experimental methods. Beverley started baking about five years ago for a charity workshop and hasn't stopped since.

Abigail Kamara, 18 - Abigail is our youngest baker this year. She studies journalism at University College London and is a self-taught baker. Despite her age, she already has over 7 years of baking experience, having started in the kitchen early with her grandmother, but it was university that got her into seriously into baking, often as a way to de-stress. Her treats range from the advanced to "slammed together under 30 minutes" and always brighten up study sessions.

Jaget Kumar, 29 - Jaget is a sergeant for Manchester transport and a keen urban explorer. When he's not keeping the Manchester public transport on time, he bakes for his colleagues and family. He started baking in his teenage years and often competes in local fetes.

Melissa Oswald, 47 - Melissa is a beekeeper in Hereford and likes to use her own honey instead of sugar in her bakes. She lives with her father and her husband, but she relents that she is her own biggest critic. Her products are sold weekly at the local farmer's market and have become a town staple.

Dominic Croft, 31 - A former police constable turned-full-time dad, Dominic originally comes from Herefordshire and now lives in the countryside. He describes himself as a "traditional baker" and likes reproducing historical recipes. With two recently adopted children, he also makes "fictional foods", food that is inspired by meals from books, TV and film. His husband Victor is a farmer, whose produce are often used as ingredients.

Sky Gardens, 23 - Originally from Dover, Sky works as a florist in London and loves using her own homegrown herbs in her bakes. She bakes as a way to de-stress from busy city life and loves the designing and decorating part best. She won a cake design contest held at her hometown in 2014 and prides herself on being able to make the most boring cake look good.

Harold Postmartin, 79 - Harold lives in Cambridge and has only recently retired after teaching European Modern History at the University of St Andrews for 40 years. When baking, he likes to stick to the classics and often has tales to tell about the society certain food trends arose in. Although not an expert on culinary history, Harold's a methods are often simple, but stunning.

Kimberley Reynolds, 37 - Kimberley worked as an FBI agent for fifteen years and is now a diplomatic liaison living in London. She moved to the UK ten years ago and now travels all over the country, helping businesses negotiate tricky international politics. She works best under stress and high-pressure situations and often likes to wing it when baking. Kimberley's baking style fuses American delicacies with lighter, more subtle flavours of British desserts.

Simone Fitzwilliam, 32 - Simone tends bar and works as a singer at the Cafe dé Paris in Cornwall, a local family-owned historical bar and cafe. She learned to bake when she tried her hand at reproducing the café's delicious goods at home. Currently, she has proudly mastered the Viennese cake, profiteroles, macaroons and cheesecake to culinary perfection. 

Zachary Palmer, 27 - Originally from London, Zach works at the local whole foods supermarket in Chelmsford and often likes experimenting with his bakes by adding exotic flavours and spices he gets to take home. His recipes have been passed to him from his mum and grandmothers, whose classic blends he likes to "jazz up" with more modern flavours.

The 7th series of the Great British Bake Off returns on 17th August and will be airing at 8 o'clock on Wednesdays on BBC One. Returning as judges are Thomas Nightingale and Molly DuFae along with hosts Miriam Stephanopolous and Sahra Guleed.


Chapter Text

A Song of Sixpence: obsession, publicity and love in the time of extremely social media

Telegraph on Sunday > Culture > TV
By Isis Abbott
17th September 2017

Eight months after the scandal that went down as the most memorable controversy in recent television history, Thomas Nightingale and Peter Grant open up about the relationship that became the nation's talking point.

It is on a brisk, sunny July morning that I sit down with Thomas Nightingale and Peter Grant in a café in North Surrey. We meet in one of London's more distant suburbs, miles away from the hubbub and bustle of the city - the town centre is idyllic and quiet, the streets mostly emptied of residents during its annual holiday season.

The café is a piece of local history, tucked away just off the high street above a boutique crafts shop and the post office, its interiors homely and shabby chic. It has a low ceiling and wide, Edwardian windows, decorated with vintage furniture and a polished wooden floor. The counter serves rustic, home-cooked food and freshly baked pastries. Usually a bustling local hangout, this morning it is empty with the exception of one uninterested waiter sitting at the till.

Someone with a keen eye might recognise the interior as a location that featured in one of the historical sections in last year's The Great British Bake Off. Not having one myself, I get this detail pointed out to me by Grant, who launches into an enthusiastic exposition about how the building's narrow structures and the light from the windows would have influenced its food production process in mid-18th century.

Almost a year now since we last saw them on television - three months of jokes, two weeks of press scandal and fourteen days of blood-thirsty, drama-hungry tabloids - in what Entertainment Weekly would dramatically call “the most eventful silly season in modern memory”, it's little wonder that they would want to lie low and run far from the spotlight.

When the seventh series of Bake Off began airing eleven months ago, it seemed unlikely that Grant, the cheeky, sharp-tongued heartthrob of the new series, and Nightingale, the show's famously poker-faced hard-to-impress judge, would end up in the eye of a media firestorm only fifteen weeks later.



British Bake Off
The nation’s favourite competitive baking show comes back tonight at 8PM on BBC One! Read about our brand new batch of contestants here:

Brandon Coopertown
Here we gooo!    

Robert Su
Rooting for Kimberley just to root for the but she really needs to buy some chill. Someone tell her this isn't

tbh i was expecting her to make an eagle-shaped cake lmao

Henry Pyke
the BBC being very politically correct with its contestant selection this year

Ms Teng
Did that Zachary boy attempt to put ginseng into cake?

Robert Su
....I just had to watch with my own two eyes a white dude try to use ginseng as an honest-to-god ingredient.


Cyrus Wilkinson
is Kimbeley's strategy to win just simply out-american everyone else?

Robert Su
oh god please don't let Reynolds say "i'm not here to make friends" I don't think this nation can take more embarrassment 

peter is really laying it on thick with the flirting. less is more buddy

Nicki Minaj


Miriam Stephanopolous
Thomas 'I am too British and therefore immune to flattery' Nightingale had to hold back a smile at Peter. May this go down in history 







aahhhh bev and sky's friendship are so cute i can't take it??? the way bev scrunches her nose at sky and goes all defensive when that white dude makes fun of her. and sky made bev laugh so hard she almost dropped her mixing bowl, and that tiny nudge when bev got first in the technical, oh my god i can't wait to see several more weeks of them

why does everything i love die

Source: onyourmarksgetset-bake      #gbbo #I KNOW????
26,554 notes



BAKE OFF WEEK ONE: Cake and Catastrophes
By Daniel Hossack, 17th August 2016

The seventh series of Bake Off comes to a cracking start, with the first episode bringing us an exciting smorgasbord of decadent cakes and twelve new bakers. We'll be writing up weekly recaps here at for the next ten weeks, so make sure to subscribe for the updates!

Signature: Chiffon cake

As usual, we start the first week with something simple: chiffon cake, which was supposed to be "soft, delicate, fluffy and melt-in-the-mouth" according to Molly. Most did well - Lesley, Peter, Harold and Melissa all wowed the judges, but Sky and Abigail lagged behind with one collapse and one charred disaster. A couple of brave ones went and put alcohol in, clogging their cakes to even Molly's disappointment. Jaget's ginger and rum was the only one that bounced back with good balance of flavour and texture, Beverley's unique mixture of orange and earl grey set her apart from the crowd. Harold and Melissa stuck to the classics, while Peter, Kimberley and Lesley all added a bit more pizzazz. 

We're already seeing distinctive baking styles, from the brave-and-bold Peter and Abigail, to the experimental Zach, to Lesley's precise techniques and Simone's more wing-it attitude. I'm personally fond of Harold's old school baking and Dominic's fussiness, but Abigail's steely-eyed resolve in the face of disaster is inspiring to see. And while I like Kimberley's style, it feels a bit like she's been dropped in from one of those fire-and-brimstone American monstrosities. She has yet to grow on me.

Technical: Neapolitan

The technical this week was a Neapolitan cake, with three flavours and three different potential disasters. Icing woes and over-baking were the sources of the main headaches, landing a couple bakers in the multi-coloured danger zone. Bottom of the pile was Dominic, Sky and Kimberley in 12th, 11th and 10th with messy centres, unset chocolate and raw dough. Following that was Zach's with curdled buttercream in 9th, Melissa's with a slight lean in 8th and Jaget's too dry sponge in 7th. Landing on their feet in the middle was Simone (6th) and Harold (5th) and Peter (4th). The cream of the crop was Lesley, Abigail and Beverley coming in 3rd, 2nd and 1st.

Showstopper: Architecture-themed 3-tiered black forest gateau

I constantly worry about the producers running out of ideas, but this may be unfounded - they can make anything difficult by adding a themed element, it would seem. 

While Zach and Melissa also struggled in the technical, it was badly structured signature cake that sent our first contestant home. After middling technical and an unlucky signature, Sky was eliminated as her attempted brutalist-era estate building ended up more the ruins at Parthenon than architectural genius, collapsing due to an underbaked base.  Peter’s London skyline showstopper got a trending hashtag and three-tiered cake impressed both Thomas and Molly. However, it was Beverley’s waterfall cake - filled with blueberry, strawberry, passion fruit and decorated with white chocolate - that got her the series’ first star baker.

Star Baker: Beverley

Eliminated: Sky

Subscribe to for weekly GBBO recaps.



British Bake Off
It's biscuit week on tonight's , but who will crumble under the pressure? Find out at 8PM tonight!  

Daniel Hossack
take a shot every time Zach puts in something weird or "out there"

Augusta Coopertown
who puts carrot, anise and ginger into danish biscuits

Augusta Coopertown
as a Dane can i just say: we're happy to declare whoever wins this challenge as an honourary Dane 




thomas: the signature challenge is danish biscuits

all the boc (bakers of colour): my parents used the tins for storage

Source: choux-hury   #tv: gbbo

351 notes


Robert Su
I'm surprised they're not doing biscuits shaped like sewing supplies


jaget is doing spiced danish biscuits bc his parents would put spices in the tins i'M

Richard Lewis
Thomas just said that Melissa's stroopwaffle just crumbled like the Berlin wall, that's just brutal! 

Nicki Minaj
"this is more of an iron curtain" Molly is SAVAGE this episode

James Gallagher

Robert Su
 this is why no one talks to us any more

"i'm doing tea-infused biscuits.i'm aware of the irony.if they turn out badly,i'm gonna go find the nearest harbour" i'm in LOVE

Ms Teng
Peter is using his architectural expertise to help with other people's structures. What a responsible use of power. 

I'm sorry Jaget, but that Nessie structure looks like it's a reacreation of two guys in a wooden sub pretending to be Nessie 

If Peter's leaning tower gets finished it's going to go down as a piece of history. That is the stuff of legend! 

Bev is doing the thing that every student has done: pretend the wreck is part of the effect 


Brandon Coopertown
Molly's looking at Peter's biscuit tower like it's the 8th wonder of the world, and I can't blame her 

Nicki Minaj



you: it's not a mess, it's informal
me: it's not a mess, it's supposed to be broken

Source: gingham-gods

768 notes 


Daily Express 
Column: "British" Bake Off? This year's Bake Off contestants stir up debate about our national identity  


BAKE OFF WEEK TWO: Them's the Breaks and Them's the Bakes
By Cyrus Wilkinson, 24th August 2016

Remaining bakers: Abigail, Peter, Kimberley, Harold, Melissa, Zach, Lesley, Dominic, Beverley, Jaget, Simone

Biscuit week always makes for good tension, as the brittle products end up misshapen, crumbling and falling apart, but this week seemed relatively tame...until the signature. With relatively less hysterics than last year, Series 7's biscuits still saw some eye-opening miracles and equally cringeworthy disasters. We saw bakers skirting the edge of BBC's product placement rules with the signature, get into a sticky mess with the technical and build everything from miracles to monsters in the showstopper.

Signature: Danish butter biscuits

Technical: Stroopwaffles

Showstopper: Biscuit structure using one Wholemeal / Full-corn dough 

After two, let's face it, middling challenges, the showstopper's the one makes it worth watching. You'd think biscuit structures would get boring after the third year, but watching bakers construct 3D art out of flour, sugar and butter is always a sight to behold. 

Beverley and Lesley stunned with nautical themes - a submarine and the Titanic - while Harold and Dominic made good attempts with gingerbread houses. Two disasters were saved with grace, some improv and a quick slathering of imagination. Kimberley's attempt at a zeppelin almost went the way of the Hindenburg and Beverley's reconstruction of the Titanic really did hit that iceberg as both of her hull structures cracked. Abigail's chocolate biscuit train was her saving grace, and Melissa landed on her feet with a honey-flavoured beehive. Jaget made a mythical attempt at creating the Loch Ness monster - which was more monster than myth due to a badly formed dough. I thought Lesley's submarine was good - the melted candy windows were a nice touch - but not really as impressive as the rest of the contestants. 

Not one for subtleties, Peter finally got to use his architectural prowess - something he was very willing to share as other bakers' structures collapsed, crumbled and cracked. Peter's biscuit Leaning Tower of Pisa was, honestly, a piece of both architectural and baking genius that even made the Nightingale break into a grin of delight for the first time in centuries the series. 

Beverley's stroke of innovation in the face of disaster was nothing short of genius and I'm delighted they let her get away with it. As her biscuits cracked and broke in two during assembly, instead of re-making them with 30 minutes left, she made a meringue, placed it between the biscuit hulls and called it the iceberg. That's what I call planning ahead. 

However, nothing could save Zach's attempted sandcastle from the wrecking ball as his cinnamon oatmeal turned out "like cardboard" and the shortbread was overworked.

Star baker: Lesley

Eliminated: Zach



British Bake Off
Overworked and underproofed? No, we're not talking about The Met. Third week is bread week on at 8PM tonight!

Daniel Hossack
take a shot every time Peter helps someone. Then raise a glass to him, bc we should all aspire to be more like Peter

I love Kimberley, but "thanksgiving focaccia" is not a word i ever want to hear again

OH THANK GOD, it's just what she makes around thanksgiving, not actually turkey and cranberry focaccia

how did you make Thomas Nightingale agree to dough without yeast. what leverage do you have on him

Sahra Guleed
they threatened his most priced possessions. (his suits. i'm talking about his suits).

Elizabeth Matthews
BBC is pushing the envelope. Last time someone tried bread without yeast a baker almost died.

Ryan Carroll

Miriam Stephanolopous
Somewhere, Dara O'Briain is watching this with head in his hands.

Ryan Carroll
technical looks awful, but i can't blame them. If i was in there again, i'd be making the same mess and i've made this since i was a kid

Nicki Minaj
aww peter looks so sad when his bakes don't get judged well :(

William Skirmish
Is it me or is Thomas really harsh on Peter except for technical challenges?

Ms Teng 
"Dominic's bread sculpture will be in the shape of a unicorn head" What?

Ms Teng 
I mean, i understood all those words in that sentence separately, but not put together.

It still astounds me to this day that a unicorn head made of bread could look so good.

Bradley Coopertown
....that is the most intimidating showstopper I've ever seen. I don't know to whether I should clap or agree to a deal I can't refuse

“i feel like the don of the gay mafia” dominic is so adorable!!

Daniel Hossack
If you're the don of the gay mafia, I voluteer as bag man. As long as I get bread bonuses.

Mellissa Oswald
We were all really stunned and slightly disturbed by that bake. No one wanted to be the first to cut a piece off!

Bradley Coopertown
How many times has heard "overworked and underproofed" jokes do you think? 

Dominic Croft 
why do you think i quit the force?

Henry Pyke
 Simone's bread looks like someone murdered a cat and spliced its body with a lump of dough

BuzzFeed UK
Was Thomas Nightingale unfairly harsh on contestant Peter Grant?

listen I would not mind being slammed against that counter by lesley




u kno how when ur crush does something really brilliant but you can't show how big a crush you have on them so you just go the opposite direction and pretend to be unimpressed

Source: olympia   #don't call thomas nightingale out like that it's rude

568 notes


BAKE OFF WEEK THREE: Rising to the Challenge
By James Lochrane, 31st August 2016

Remaining Bakers: Abigail, Peter, Kimberley, Harold, Melissa, Lesley, Dominic, Beverley, Jaget, Simone

It's bread week on Bake Off, and Thomas "Tiger Tank" Nightingale reminds us why he got the devastating nickname in the first place. Once again, he is on the prowl for badly-proofed dough, overbaked crusts and raw flour, ravaging through hidden mistakes and attempted coverups like a tank through enemy lines (Miriam's words, not mine). Even though only one was sent home, four contestants were in trouble this week. The tension in the tent must have been palpable with their cold sweat.

Signature: Foccacia

Peter's sesame oil and curry loaf and Jaget's chilli-tomato stood out with Kimberley and Lesley coming in close. Kimberley opted for tomato, spinach and cheese while Lesley went for mushrooms and cream, but both were unfortunately underbaked. Beverley pulls ahead with Carribean flavours, using chilli flakes, paprika and bacon - I personally think she, Jaget and Peter have a bet going to see who can push their limits with spiciness. 

Harold plays it safe once again with olive and jamon, but his technically perfect bake put in him the safe zone. Dominic's sundried tomato and basil was less impressive, through, with too much salt and not enough basil, while Simone's strawberry and balsamic was soaked through and grimacingly sour. Melissa went for goat's cheese, walnut and honey, an unusual flavour combination that got the series' first handshake. 

Technical: Irish soda bread

Showstopper: 2-flavoured herbed bread sculpture

Star Baker: Kimberley

Eliminated: Simone 



The two men in front of me are wearing a combination of anticipation and wariness when I take out my recorder and place it on the table. At first glance, Nightingale's off-screen appearance doesn't seem much different to his television persona, where Bake Off has meticulously sculpted his public image as ice king like figure. Known as "the Nightingale" amongst long-time fans and Thomas only to his closest friends and family, the widespread use of his surname came as a joke, then only furthered to cement that image.

His fashion style of the now-iconic bespoke three-piece suit, waistcoat and silk tie gave him an impending, almost militaristic look on-screen; but here in a roadside café, everything about that demeanour has softened.

“It was strange, being back in the centre of the spotlight," he says. "The last time it happened, I was going through the most underwhelming break-up of my life which everyone in the press deemed to be a tragedy.” He is referring, of course, to the melodramatic split from David Mellenby over ten years ago.

I remember the summer 2002, when he first came into the public eye. A polite but closed-off man, Nightingale constantly looked uncomfortable with his newly found attention, a curious contrast to Mellenby who been a rising star in culinary world. They had come out the year before and Mellenby’s meteoric rise had pulled Nightingale with him, seemingly reluctantly. When the couple separated only a year later, to national mourning and outpouring of thinkpieces, Nightingale disappeared from the press and media circus as Mellenby continued on his path to A-list stardom.

Their break-up, according to Nightingale, had been “amicable but uneventful.” He shakes his head at this, reminiscing and frustrated. “We were in school together, started dating when were young, drifted apart, and broke up. You don’t find the love of your life at seventeen and that’s not the end of the world. But, well, try to tell everyone else that.

“There were so few gay celebrities back then who were out, so when we came out it got turned into this sociopolitical event. I wasn’t experienced with the whole media circus then, but I knew I wanted away from it. Being put under a microscope like that, being scrutinised, that was such a sudden change from everything I knew.”

Nightingale's culinary career began when he was twelve - the youngest child of seven, his parents sent him to a prestigious French primary school that would span out into an apprenticeship and finally a masterclass in culinary innovations. When Bake Off first aired, it was to an audience of two million on BBC Two, and his return to the spotlight was barely a flicker in his mind.

Even during the meteoric rise of Bake Off's ratings, however, Nightingale's personal life had always been notoriously secretive. No official autobiography, just a few handfuls of publicity features and television appearances, and certainly no scandals - even the Bake Off's routine minor media dramas didn't faze him. We knew general information about his upbringing, education and family but beyond an ill-fated relationship ten years ago, his place in the public eye was strictly reserved to the white tent. Hosting was never meant to catapult him into stardom - the money was good and the job was easy, and in the beginning the show seemed lowkey enough not to gain too much traction. The fact that he got to work with childhood friend Molly DuFae was just the cherry on top.

Where the Bake Off hosts Sahra Guleed writes about the intersecting experiences of being a Black muslim woman in The Guardian and Miriam Stephanopolous has a weekly column in attitude magazine talking about LGBT issues, Nightingale maintains a polite radio silence across all media platforms. Even co-judge DuFae couldn't resist making a jab at former Labour MP Ed Balls when he appeared on the Comic Relief Bake Off last year, but Nightingale's tight-lipped stance has maintained his formal image of neutrality. He was, all in all, a blank slate - and it's not an image maintained without purpose.

Through careful straining and sieving of his persona, he had made sure that no issue could be made of his of sexuality if it was never made relevant. With his former relationship laid forgotten in the decomposing memory of the gossip columns, Bake Off could have its share of fame and appeal to the general public without right-wing media clutching their pearls about political correctness and moral concern. After all, the show premiered to untested ground and lukewarm reception; after the first series, Nightingale was well aware of the precarious issue of self-presentation and the social tightrope that was required to woo the mainstream audience. (That Sahra Guleed, a Black Muslim woman in a hijab, would be co-hosting with openly gay Miriam Stephanopolous only five years later was a scenario nigh-impossible to image at the time).

As the show gained traction and viewership grew - the 2015 finale where Elizabeth "Ten-Tons" Matthews was deemed winner saw Bake Off's ratings make television history - Nightingale's new place in the public eye became an easy transition, but still miraculously clean of tabloid clickbait and illicit love affairs. Despite the drama that is squeezed from occasional scandals and the annual stir-ups of the show itself, the grizzly claws of the gossip machine were sheathed and stayed clear from the hosts and judges. Perhaps the public wanted to believe in something wholesome - that a reality show with a kinder, simpler format could exist outside the world of a backstabbing and cutthroat business, like a sponge encased in protective shell of royal icing.



British Bake Off
Four weeks into , but who will please Molly's sweet tooth on dessert week? Find out at 8PM tonight! Teaser: Peter has his goal set. 

“I’ve um, kinda been trying to impress the Nightingale the past few weeks cause I thought - there’s gotta be one thing that’ll make him lose his cool. That man’s got a poker face like— he's like the Ice King. He’s a statue. But I think I’ve almost got it. I’m gonna crack him before this series is over.”

I honestly cant tell if them's fighting words or dirty talk   

Nicki Minaj
I'm pretty sure that Peter will only find a cold metallic alloy and wires under there

Melissa is using honey... again. Chill, woman, let your bees rest and use sugar like the rest of the plebs 

Daniel Hossack
take a shot and salute Harold for sticking to his guns 

Peggy Brown
I love that Harold explains the history behind some his bakes. Give the research team a run for their money! 

William Skirmish
Peter's looks like he's putting ginger and chilli into his apple mousse tart JUST to personally test Thomas Nightingale.

Isis Abbott  
watching Abigail bake all that should stress me out, but the look in her eye makes me think she could conquer the world easy as breathing

She could

Peter Grant
that's because she could 




Nightingale week 1: keeps professional distance around Peter, compliments on his bakes, criticises all the details.
Nightingale week 4: stuffs his face, talks with his mouth full, flirts on national television, is probably ready to fight everyone in that tent for that pie
Molly: chill

source: soggy--bottoms   #LET THOMAS NIGHTINGALE LIVE

3,910 notes


omg go peter!!!!!!! hold nightingale's nightingaze for nightingdays!!!!

lmao @ Nightingale stuffing his face and talking with his mouth full while judging Peter’s bake, so much for that public school education

haha wow i wish thomas nightgale would nightingaze at me like that

Lesley May 
Nightingale is the swooner not the catcher

Molly DuFae
Miriam and Sahra were ready to physically fight Thomas for that tart

Miriam Stephanopolous
with the camera crew all ready to descend, I was surprised there weren't any elbows thrown

Ms Teng
Did he win?

Molly DuFae
Have you seen Sahra in action? Of course he didn’t win. Peter saved him a slice though, because he is a sweetheart

Sahra Guleed






next time you're embarrassed about humiliating yourself with zero emotional self-restraint in front of your crush just remember that at least it didn't get broadcast to an audience of 10 mil+

Source: onyourmarksgetset-bake    #Thomas nightingale has done nothing to deserve this
3,590 notes


Nicki Minaj

aww, Bev and Lesley guided Abigail through the alcohol-boiling process, now they're beaming like proud parents at her showstopper!





you could see every baker going mmmm watcha say internally as Nightingale announced sugar work for the most humid day of the year. 

Source: choux-hury #fucking Bingate war flashbacks man

231 notes


I can't believe that Peter missed the title for star baker AGAIN

BuzzFeed UK
19 reasons why Lesley's expressions from  are the BEST 




so anyway Dominic is crying over Melissa going, it's only four weeks in and I can't do this this early

source: silversmithereens    #gbbo #families of choice #shhhhh it's going into that tag

2,389 notes

no nononono, no emotional breakdown until at least week five, them's the rules


BAKE OFF WEEK FOUR: A sticky end
By Derek Hardwood, 7th September 2016

Remaining bakers: Abigail, Peter, Kimberley, Harold, Melissa, Lesley, Dominic, Beverley, Jaget

Things are heating up in the Bake Off tent, and it’s not just the spices or the burning dough. Lesley was crowned last week’s Star Baker, the title narrowly missing Peter once again. After three consecutive weeks, this has earned him the nickname The Starling, courtesy of Sahra. “So not a star, but a starling” also took the internet by storm as younger Bake Off fans took to the term.

Nightingale became the victim of some gentle ribbing from the hosts after a chemistry-filled episode and famously saying that Peter’s skill was “frustrating” because of how he always misses a trick on minor details. Molly, his co-host, agreed on Peter’s potential brilliance was matched only with his folly for distractions and making repeat mistakes.

Signature: 12 mousse tarts

Technical: Tosca buns

Showstopper:  Layered cake with sugar work

Abigail's alcohol almost set fire to her work bench and drove her close to tears - while Lesley and Beverley helped her put it out (and gave her tips on redoing it), Peter was left in the cold as he got distracted while doing the sugar-work. With a half-collapsed meringue and a sad-looking spirals, Peter's mini-Canary Wharf was beginning to look like it's been under siege. Still, substance over style: his flavours pulled him through, and it looks like the Nightingale just barely managed to hold the bliss off his face while he bit into salt caramel and white chocolate concoctions. 

Star Baker: Abigail

Eliminated: Melissa




Welcome back, Thomas! Your recent Google searches:

What is tumblr?
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What is shipping?
Erase search history

People also searched for:

peter gbbo
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From: Thomas [22:49]
I can't believe you almost persuaded me to get a "Twitter", the internet is a den of sin and I am never going online ever again.

From: Abdul [23:00]
OH yeah, this week was not a good week to talk to you about social media




British Bake Off
It's pie week on . Who lands in hot water and who's part of the upper crust? Find out at 8PM 

Molly DuFae
Four and twenty blackbirds, baked in a pie, but just leave The Nightingale alone. He's got a restraining order.

v charmed by Abigail's "salad inspired" quiche bc that is exactly what a uni student would do. slam some leftover food together, call it a meal  

sahra: "so you've made victorian game pie before"

harold: "yes as a teenager, when this was first invented"

harold is the COOLEST

Robert Su
aww. Reynolds helping Peter!!

James Gallager

Robert Su
Reynolds risked her own pie collapsing because she was helping Peter, now Peter is helping her back. You don't see this on American TV!

Celia Munroe
Is this not cheating? Helping one contestant get ahead? I know Peter loves helping others but this is a little excessive.

Bradley Coopertown
Aww, Peter and Jaget are teaming to help Kim!

Nicky Minaj

William Skirmish
This is a whole new level of contestant sportsmanship...not sure how legal it is, though.

Peggy Brown
they do realise that this is a competition, right?

Miriam Stephanopolous
BTW technically this is against the rules, but they're doing it anyway because it's Right

so basically they were the

Henry Pyke
She should have known in advance this wasn't an American recipe. Screwing up the measurements like that, what a stupid bint. 

James Gallager 
did you come out of your mama's womb gagging on your own dick or did you have it surgically attached to your mouth?


from: Peter [20:50]
twitter is calling us the Baking Golden Trio. i call harry

from: jaget k. [20:53]
you're not harry. kimberley is harry. you're ron.

from: Peter [20:54]
what does that make you?

from: jaget k. [20:55]
i'm a very tired hermione






bets on Reynold's pies: think she'll make pumpkin spice, apple or pecan?


Source: blakes-sevenhundred

1,293 notes



Peter and Jaget and Kim this week were just the nicest, kindest people in the purest, most wholesome show in the world and honestly I don't know what we have done as a species to deserve this

Source: choux-hury #theme: found families #tv: gbbo #this show is so wholesome

2,470 notes


jaget/kim/peter sandwich while they wait for results is just  jaget really deserved that baker and they both knew it. this show is a treasure.


BAKE OFF WEEK FIVE: Friendship is magic
By Cyrus Wilkinson, 14th September 2016

Remaining: Abigail, Peter, Kimberley, Harold, Lesley, Dominic, Beverley, Jaget

Both tears and tiers fell during this week thanks to unstable bakes and toppling structures, but some quick improv pulled most of them through. That, and the power of friendship. 

Signature: Quiche Lorraine

Technical: Victorian game pie

Showstopper: 3-tiered sweet shortcrust pies

Twitter was in an uproar after Jaget and Peter banded together to save Kimberley from disaster - one that that only happened because she helped Peter in the first place. She'd measured the sugar and baking powder wrong and her pie had turn into a burnt disaster, with only 40 minutes left. In a feat of incredible sportsmanship, Peter gave her some leftover dough and helped her salvage her filling to make mini-pies. Something that Jaget was good at, so he joined in out of sheer frustration that they weren't doing it right. What a man. 

Star baker: Jaget

Eliminated: Dominic




While Nightingale talked, Grant had gone quiet beside him, his face taking on a focused, contemplative look. It’s not out of shyness or discomfort, but out of an uncanny ability to blend into the background. Off-screen, Nightingale takes up a presence like an old movie star, but it's Grant that my attention gravitates towards. He strikes you as the type of person who will keep quiet, listen to you talk, and wait until you say more than you wanted to.

Born and raised in Peckwater Estate in London's Kentish Town, Grant insists that his background doesn't hold a candle to Nightingale's "extravagant showbiz life", as he calls it. Grant's father was a jazz musician and his mother worked as a domestic helper. Baking started as an activity between him and his mother, and soon became was a hobby that kept him relaxed and cleared his mind. While he loved experimenting with recipes, his true love was in architecture. “I actually wanted to go to Hendon,” Grant tells me. “For a while, that's where I thought I was headed. I was ready to go, but then architecture school actually worked itself out, and that was that.”

He became this year's heartthrob in the tent barely two weeks in. Cuttingly deadpan, unflinchingly steady and always willing to lend a hand in times of crisis, the audience took quickly to his easy smile, geeky references and awful puns that matched the hosts. He wooed the judges with bold flavours and rich spices, often infusing his Sierra Leonean roots into his food. As he explained to the hosts, his mother was a West African immigrant and father was an English jazz legend; he aimed to create his food in a way that reflected his childhood, that would bring his own memories and relationship with the food into the tent, mixing styles, techniques and flavours. It worked, and it wowed - the episode he got the famous handshake was still the most emotionally satisfying one yet.

However, it was his generosity that shot him to internet fame and put him on the news radar, when he helped fellow contestant Kimberley Reynolds out in a showstopper. The American baker had mixed up the metric and imperial measuring units, dooming her to almost-certain failure after two unsuccessful challenges. When he and fellow contestant Jaget Kumar teamed up to make sure she didn't lose, the internet went wild - with both praise and controversy. It was a celebration of friendship and camaraderie; it was cheating; it was exactly in the spirit of the Bake Off; it was Reynolds' own fault; it was a stunt for ratings.

“It was the right thing to do,” Grant said in the post-challenge interview. 


Chapter Text


The archetype of the “boy next door” was not a role that came easy to Grant - The Daily Mail certainly had a hard time swallowing the sincerity behind his kindness, opting instead to meticulously comb his actions for ulterior motives. But even they tired - as the weeks went on, their thinly-veiled smear campaign petered out (sorry) and we watched as he grinned in happiness when his fellow contestants were praised, even when he himself was in danger of elimination.

We awwwed when he gave distressed or mortified contestants hugs after a brutal judging, cheered with him when he helped them. He became a big-brother figure to Abigail Kamara and cried for Lesley May when she left. Where the Sun would often accuse him of “putting on a show” and “faking it for the camera”, most of the British audience were enamoured. And we weren't the only one.

Elaborate accounts of the fondness with which Nightingale would look at Grant became a regular staple by week six, moving from twitter to blogs to newspaper digest. We'd spun a narrative out of clever editing and cue music and it was Grant that paid the price when twelve weeks later, the wholesome image of him came under fire just as quickly as it was embraced.

The turning of the tide wasn't a flash-freeze so much as a slow burn; it was ten weeks of nudge-nudge-wink-wink jokes and hashtags about the “sexual tension” between Grant and Nightingale while tittering behind our hands (because the idea of gay people finding love is hilariously unrealistic). Glances, smiles, “body language experts” doing their take and segments repeated ad-nauseam on the spin-off panel show An Extra Slice, it was a story that we half-believed and half-laughed at. The idea of a (male) judge flirting with a (male) contestant was hilarious, and their sexuality was made the punchline while we waited for the other shoe to drop.

There was no scandal yet because there was no conflict to milk; no cries of favouritism, no enraged viewers taking to twitter demanding justice after an unfair judgement. In fact, Nightingale was notoriously harsh on judging Grant's bakes the first couple of weeks, to the point it almost became controversial



British Bake Off
Don't flake out on us, because it's pastry week on  ! Tune in at 8PM tonight on BBC One

Daniel Hossack
take a shot if you see any leaking butter 

Elizabeth Matthews
my god, i get so much second-hand anxiety all over again just from watching this! pastry week is always so stressful 

Simone Fitzwilliam
Peter's using extra stopwatches to help him focus, that's really clever!

Ryan Carroll
peter mate, it looks like you ransacked the bodies of fallen bakers for their spare timers

Peter Grant
I plead the fifth

you know shit is about to Go Down when the background music goes full orchestra  

this is chaos, i've seen orgies with more co-ordination than this signature

James Gallager
what the hap is fuckening we're only at the signature and it's already a mess

WOW Bev's look like works of art!!

Celia Munroe
Judges shouldn't be giving Harold a hard time for keeping it simple, he's the only one not in a panic




idk if that look thomas gave peter is suitable for pre-watershed television

Source: silversmithereens   #gbbo #no one look me in the eye as i shame-ship this #starlingale #oh god i have a tag for them why do i have a tag for them

340 notes



okay listen to me. listen. that part where Thomas Nightingale looks at peter and gives him praise with hearteyes did more for romance than white het couples have in the entire history of broadcast television

Source: choux-hury #fuck nicholas sparks and john green this is the only love story that matters this tv season

996 notes


Robert Su
Thomas said he's 'not big fan of spicy' n u can bet all the boc (bakers of color) made eye contact of mutual support (of color).

i'm well worried for jaget's techicals, i don't think that is supposed to look like a dead snail

Simone Fitzwilliam
Ooh, I think mum used to make vol-au-vents in the 70's! they looked more like Jaget's than Lesley's, though...

Miriam: have you eaten these while undercover on a posh do?
Kim: I'm afraid that's classified, ma'am

Molly DuFae
Thomas definitely had them during the 18th century when he was a spy for the Empire

oh no we're seeing the end of the !!!!!

James Gallagher

Robert Su
I knew I was gonna tear up when Reynolds cried for Jaget but then she PINCHES HIS CHEEKS. LIKE A GRANDMA.  


That was one of more emotional goodbyes we've had on

BuzzFeed UK
16 gifs that perfectly capture the Jaget/Kim/Peter friendship

BuzzFeed UK
Stop the presses, some genius put Lionel Richie over all the scenes Peter looked at Thomas  

The Guardian
Sahra Guleed on 'Bake Off' complaints: "Stop fussing over 'Britishness'- We're moving with the times and Daily Mail readers should keep up"




The golden trio may have split up, but i can always console myself with the peter/bev and peter/abi and bev/les friendship and harold being everyone's grandad

Source: onyourmarksgetset-bake #baking family

266 notes



BAKE OFF WEEK SIX: The Great British Flake Off
By James Lochrane, 21st September, 2016 


Remaining bakers: Abigail, Peter, Harold, Lesley, Beverley, Jaget, Kimberley

Pastry week - the only week on Bake Off that needs unnecessary maths and unnecessary equations. Also one of the few answers teachers can give to shut up smart-aleck students who ask "But when are we ever going to use this?". (This is a personally tested method, by the way.)

Signature: 12 Pot Pies
We started off well and ended up in a panic, as the pastry didn't set or the oven was too hot or the butter leaked everywhere. Time ran out, tears were shed, and Thomas Nightingale replenished his life energy with the baker's distress.

Abigail and Harold fared steady with their usual style, by which we mean bold, unusual flavours for the former and sticking to the classics for the latter. Abigail's chicken tikka masala pie was closest to disaster, but ended up looking spendid. Beverly's minced meat ones were very visually stunning with orange-coloured pastry and intricate gold flakes, but were more style-over-substance. Harold's, in comparison, looked....okay, with potato-and-leek. His style hasn't let him down yet, as simplicity has been his friend, but, personally, I thought they looked bland. Still, simplicity was rewarded as everyone else was in a panicked flurry of sweat, wafting baking trays and melting butter, he remained calm throughout and puttered around giving a hand.

Peter's finally gaining tract and making a comeback after five rough weeks of good technicals, but middling signatures and showstoppers, with them being just short of perfect. Was Thomas Nightingale being too harsh? Or were Peter's bakes really just not good enough? The nation is undecided. Daily Mail says it's the second, so we've been going with the first just by principle. In any case, he's pulled himself up after presenting 12 pot pies gloriously filled with well-seasoned, well-flavoured and well-baked beef, tomatoes and bell peppers, marinated in West African flavours. Not one to be outdone on her national specialty, Kimberly also impressed with traditional chicken pot pie soaked with gravy and filled with mashed potatoes. (Did anyone catch their little fist-bump afterwards? That was cute.)

On the other hand, Lesley and Jaget have lagged behind and flaked off. Lesley strayed from the road and her style of winging it was simply not in her favour as she stopped counting the layers and ended up with a thick, barely-baked batch. Jaget seems to have fallen to the curse to the Star Baker, as his salmon pie was overworked and badly burnt and raw at the same time because he stuck too close to the rules.

Technical: Palmiers

Showstopper: Vol-au-vent

Star baker: Kimberley

Eliminated: Jaget



from: Peter Grant [20:26]
was nightingale flirting with me? he made a pun, Ive never heard him make a pun before
i wasn't just making it up in my head

from: Lesley [20:30]
you and the entire nation caught that, peter.

from: Peter Grant [20:42]
no but i thought that was just the editing, but it turns out it wasnt? like the bts stuff and the tweets. holy shit to think i was pining for nothing

from: Lesley [20:59]
wait did you
did you JUST figure that out.
the ENTIRE NATION has been saying that.

from: Lesley [21:00]

from: Peter Grant [21:30]
idk i thought i'd up against competition or smth and wouldn't hold a candle to certain other ex's.
like you know.




British Bake Off
Time for our bakers to grab life by the horns! Tonight at 8, does dairy week for the first time ever 

Daniel Hossack
take a shot every time something curdles, overboils or evaporates

Robert Su 
 I love that Reynolds immediately goes for the most Extra combination of flavors possible. Go big or go home, huh?

James Gallagher 

Robert Su 

Abigail is glaring at her unrisen dough like it's the misbehaving bastard child of the family outcast

i love that harold just goes around grandading everyone after Molly & Nightingale put the fear of god into them

Henry Pyke 
 First an American baker, now Japanese cheesecake? This show's lost it.

Robert Su 
Thank you for not resorting to cheap racist humour during the technical. Certain panel shows could learn from this.

Simone Fitzwilliam 
Wth is the horror movie soundtrack, is the cheesecake going to crawl out of my telly 7 days and strangle me?

Peter is going to make the Gerkin as ice cream.Can we take Miriam's "that could be interesting" to mean this might look like a penis

Elizabeth Matthews
Actually i will bet cash money that his is the only one that WON'T look like a penis





every time Peter talks about architecture, you can see Sahra, Miriam and Molly's eyes glaze over while Nightingale plans their wedding in his head. I mean his eyes are def also glazing over, but he's gonna have a beautiful venue for the reception

Source: soggy--bottoms #starlingale

2,949 notes


Nicky Minaj 
omg Lesley has an ENTIRE ARMY OF MIXING BOWLS.   

Elizabeth Matthews
 Together with Peter's battalion of timers, they'll stage a coup & overthrow Nightingale's reign of terror, crowning Molly as rightful queen

BuzzFeed UK
19 gifs that prove there is SIZZLING SEXUAL TENSION between Peter and Thomas on #GBBO

James Gallager
fucking hell DID Y'ALL LEARN NOTHING FROM 2014. people got death threats over this shit!

Kimberly Reynolds
Worst thing about getting sent home isn't going off the show, it's leaving the other bakers.

British Bake Off
VIDEO: Kimberley's exit interview has the nation in tears:

“When you’re this far into the show, it's not a shame to go. But I'm proud of far I got, and I think I've done something great. I'm not sad about leaving the competition I'm sad about leaving everyone behind. I’ve met the— the best, most amazing people here. They don’t feel like competitors, they feel like family. It’s really not easy to say goodbye. I am gonna miss them. [she tears up a bit, smiling]”




why is a dumb baking show giving me so many emotions about found families

Source: blakes-sevenhundred

2,409 notes


BAKE OFF WEEK SEVEN: Moo-ving the goalposts
By James Lochrane, 28th September 2016 


Remaining bakers: Abigail, Peter, Kimberly, Harold, Lesley, Beverley 

Sometimes, I think the production crew on this show are ingenious - sometimes, I think they're running out of ideas. I have no idea what dairy week is supposed to entail, but it's certainly provided no shortage of entertainment.

Signature: Yoghurt Bread

Technical: Japanese Cheesecake

This week's technical is Molly's recipe, and it remains as staggeringly hard as the previous. Japanese cheesecake the "fluffier and lighter" version of the classical one, baked on low heat and with lots of aeration. A few of them have seen one, which is a change from the previous weeks, and Peter's eyes got noticeably brighter when they mentioned "alternative method to the classical".

Last place was Kimberley, with a runny, underbaked sponge that pretty much collapsed in on itself. Not good for someone whose signature was underproofed and slightly burnt. Lesley came fourth with a slightly better definition but too much cheese, Peter third with a slightly too-dry cake, Harold second with too moist cake and Abigail's perfect bake came first.

Showstopper: Ice Cream Cake

Star baker: Harold

Eliminated: Kimberley 




British Bake Off
Tonight at 8 on BBC One, it's the quarter finals on -  maybe some chocolate could de-stress the situation?  

Melissa Oswald
Oh, Beverley's lava cakes look amazing! They're so elegant and dainty

Peggy Brown
Abigail's literally look like lava coming out of a volcano! that is genius

beverley and abigail's signatures this week are the definition of

“That was phenomenal” …wow Thomas do you need a cigarette

Nicky Minaj
ok wow idk if that sound nightingale just made can be broadcast before watershed

Miriam Stephanopolous
Well, I honestly did not expect that to make the edit.

was that Nightingale’s O face we just witnessed? 

"I wouldn't mind another bite" OH I'M SURE.

but are we gonna be ignoring Peter's gigantic shit-eating grin??? he set his goal on week 4 and he went for it. good man.

Celia Munroe
I have tolerated the lewd “jokes” and sexual “humour” but this is too far. that was NOT appropriate for family television.




find someone who looks at you like thomas nightingale looks at peter grant's signature dish

Source: onyourmarksgetset-bake   #starlingale #food mention

1,252 notes



Bradley Coopertown
How does Thomas Nightingale choose tech challenges? Just look up "strange pastries" on wikipedia and find the ones with least info?

Sahra Guleed
He does more than that. I think he throws darts as well

oh Bev no!! you can save it!!!!

Nicky Minaj
"Beverley is falling behind with her timing" fuck off let her go at her own speed

Henry Pyke
Does Harold know any recipes other than the ones that come on the packaging




Imagine being in your late 40s with an established TV career and having your schoolboy crush broadcast on national television

Source: choux-hury   #thomas pls

8,319 notes


What he means: I love you
What he says: Peter deserved that star baker through and through. That was a truly impressive showstopper, and seeing his technicals and skills improve, and learn from his mistakes, has been a delight to witness over the last few weeks.

Source: choux-hury    #L I S T E N #fuck I'm really starting to ship them NO ONE LOOK AT ME

6,982 notes


Daily Mail Online
GBBO sparks outrage over "inappropriate" noises made on the show

Daily Mail Online
Opinion: The BBC is lowering its standards and it's going to affect our culture

Daily Mail Online
Opinion: 'A modicum of professional stoicism' should be applied to all daytime programmes and competition judges

Oxley Thames
Don't worry , is still British: you just had a meltdown over a man showing too much emotion on the show

William Skirmish
can whine about "authenticity of bake off" all they want, but is the most British thing ever





gotta say i'm kinda disappointment that the biggest GBBO scandal this year was our nation's right-wing nutjob of a newpaper shitting itself over a judge showing a bit too much emotion.

blakes-sevenhundred  #bake off #Chocogate #it's 8 weeks in give us something tv gods

126 notes



[caption: eight-piece gifset of Thomas Nightingale from The Great British Bake Off. On the right column, in black and white, he is criticising Peter Grant’s bakes and telling him he needs to focus so as to not forget certain major details. On the left column, in colour, is him tasting a ginger-and-chili chocolate tart and complimenting Peter on his improvement]


7,891 notes



GBBO WEEK EIGHT: The Choc of the Unknown
By Derek Hardwood, 5th October 2016


Remaining: Abigail, Peter, Harold, Lesley, Beverley 

Eight weeks in and we finally have a scandal worth sinking our teeth into, already cleverly dubbed "Chocogate" by Twitter. The BBC received over 120 complaints this week after Thomas made “an inappropriate noise” during the show while judging Peter's signature. According to BBC's official statement (yes folks, they had to issue an official statement), Thomas let out "a sound of surprise" because Peter's recipe was unconventional and difficult to make, forgot a key ingredient during mixing, he "wasn't expecting the result". 

Which we're all sure sounds completely wholesome and very family-friendly and a completely plausible explanation, so now let's all move on and forget all about that. 

Signature: Chocolate lava puddings
Beverly pulled ahead with white chocolate sponge with strawberry and pistachio filling that wowed, Abigail coming in close with dark chocolate sponge, and banana and peanut butter filling. Harold and Lesley fell behind in the signature this week, as they both went for classical flavours that failed to compare. Disaster happened as Peter's creme pat didn't set fast enough and Lesley's oven was on the wrong setting - as usual, they helped each other through it. The one that got Thomas Nightingale in a frenzy, however, was Peter's chilli-chocolate sponge with dulce de leche, strawberry and lavender filling.

To be fair to Nightingale - which we rarely really are on this blog - it didn't look like Peter was going to make it. His filling didn't set, his sponge was baked too long and he was running out of time again towards the end. It really did look like a disaster for a few minutes there, but Peter managed to save it with a couple of clever innovative tricks - so the sound of surprise was definitely plausible. Still, was it really that good that it overwrote years and years of public school programming?

Technical: Moorkop

Showstopper: Chocolate sculpture

Star Baker: Peter

Eliminated: Beverley



From: Tyburn [23:34]
...You actually put that in. You actually used that clip.

From: Effra [23:38]
It's my job to produce good television. Besides, I'd like to see you try to edit out all that sexual tension and not create a hole in reality.

From: Tyburn [23:41]
You do not make my job easy, darling sister.

From: Effra [23:45]
Oh stop whinging. You hate it when your job is too easy






Welcome back, Peter! Your recent Google searches:

Thomas Nightingale 
Thomas Nightingale David Mellenby
Thomas Nightingale telegraph
when did Thomas Nightingale come out
why did Thomas Nightingale David Mellenby break up
when did Thomas Nightingale David Mellenby break up

People also searched for:

are Thomas Nightingale David Mellenby back together
David Mellenby career
David Mellenby Parkinson interview
David Mellenby autobiography
David Mellenby Vulture magazine


From: Peter [03:11]
if I ever get tempted to google nightingale's personal life ever again, pls come and tape my fingers together

From: jaget k.[09:10]
....mate, i am so sorry. for whatever it is you found

From: jaget k. [09:35]
i mean i do find it slightly creepy that you're probably googling his love life but still i am so sorry.



British Bake Off
The final four tackle Patisserie! Tune in at 8PM tonight for the semi-final  on BBC One

Daniel Hossack
take shot every time thomas nightingale speaks gratuitous french

Harold is really good at plaiting!

Peter just added brandy to this filling as a back-up. Desperate times?

Lesley's plaits look like deformed faces staring at her with dead cranberry eyes  

aaand now it looks like they're bleeding   

and she just covered them all with powdered sugar and icing





thomas: *speaks in another language for kicks*
everyone else: *stares into the camera like they're on the office
peter: *crush intensifies*

Source: silversmithereens #peter you can do better than that posh pretentious robot come on

2,301 notes


Elizabeth Matthews
That technical looks like profiterole had a illegitimate love child with a can of whipped cream and decided to start a family

Augusta Coopertown
It looks like a Swedish Semla made by a frenchman who doesn't particularly like Swedish Semla




Molly: Well, this technical challenge is one of the more difficult ones we've had. Why did you choose it?
Thomas: When I was serving in the Second World War, I was captain of a battalion stationed by the north-western French border. One day we were taken by surprise by a night-time attack from the Germans who were using genetically modified werewolves as secret weapons. We defeated them after I ripped apart a Tiger Tank with my own hands, but I lost half of my brigade in that battle. We ransacked the fallen German soldiers for supplies, and we found this pastry in one of their bags. After that we had to march for three days and three nights, and this was the only thing we had to eat. The interior should be perfectly soft and airy, the créme patisserie should be silky, the exterior should be crispy, and it should have a perfect blend of flavours. There should be a hint of hazelnut, a dash of coffee, just the right amount of sugar, and a slight whiff of the fear of death. I also expect it to break the laws of thermodynamics. And they only have two hours and forty-five minutes to make it.
Molly: ...They look wonderful. I'll take one.

Source: soggy--bottoms #E N O U G H #tv: gbbo #war mention for ts #food mention for ts

3,348 notes


Cherie Mensier
If Lesley's strudel looked more suggestive, the Mail would be up in arms right about now.

nah she's white she'll be fine

 Augusta Coopertown
my aunt from Germany is watching this with me and tutting about the English 

Daniel Hossack
 shiiiiiit t t hhis wasd a bafds isea 

 level w/ me here, mate. bc i have to know. you seem like a smart man, what made you think you could win this?

Harold considered using alcohol for his strudel - dire times, dire times indeed if Harold resorts to bribing Molly





Lesley accepting her loss with grace but then Abigail starts crying and Lesley starts crying because Abigail is crying and Peter gets teary eyed too and they're just a pile of emotion and hugs, just slam an oven pan in my face bc that would be less painful.

 Source: soggy--bottoms #i'm crying over a baking show

 920 notes



BAKE-OFF WEEK NINE: The Fantastic f(l)our 
By James Lochrane, 12th October, 2016 


Remaining Bakers: Abigail, Peter, Harold, Lesley

Signature: 24 Plaited pastries

Technical: St. Honoré cake

ChouxShowstopper: Strudel
Abigail's strudel with banana-pecan-almond poached in brandy créme pat looked intricate and lovingly made. Meanwhile, Lesley's classical blend of cinnamon, rhubarb, raspberries didn't match for and Harold's humble apple and lemon curd. Peter's been gaining momentum since week 7, and he seems to be the only one immune to the curse of the Star Baker, presenting a glorious poached-pear strudel.

The penultimate episode of The Great British Bake Off saw our last elimination of this series - after two challenges that saw her outbaked and a half-hearted showstopper, technical prodigy Lesley became the ninth and final contestant to leave the tent, leaving Abigail, Peter and Harold to go the final. Showing consistent balance of experimental flavours and outstanding technical skills, Abigail got Star Baker for the second time.

Star Baker: Abigail

Eliminated: Lesley


 WEEK 10


From: A. Seawoll [18:30]
Finale airs tomorrow. Be ready to run damage control if necessary.

From: The Tyburn [19:42]
Varvara and I have things prepared and ready to go our end. Whichever newspaper that dares to badmouth our winner shall be dealt with.

From: A. Seawoll [19:50]
Look I know I asked, but I still wake up in cold sweat from stuff like this. This is taking years off of my life


British Bake Off
The Big Bake: Don't miss the final tonight at 8PM on BBC One! 

The Irregulars
IT ALL GOES DOWN TONIGHT: Here's a primer for the Bake Off 2016 Final

Bradley Coopertown

Daniel Hossack
if they still help each other, chug the lot, bc this week is every man for himself

I've never been so nervous!!!!

William Skirmish
Peter's signature hasn't impressed Nightingale ...oh dear

Peggy Brown
Is it me or has Peter's timers duplicated? Are they breeding? Someone needs to look into this.

Cherie Mensier
it's the final, it's go big or go home

Daniel Hossack
ah hell of course it's peter who still willing to lend a hand

Ms Teng
Peter and Abigail are using Asian teas for their tea-infused cakes, as one should if you want decent flavour. Good show, good judgement.

Good to see Peter putting his architecture skills to good use again

Henry Pyke
Did someone forget to tell Peter and Abigail that its the great BRITISH Bake off

Augusta Coopertown
I love Abigail's attention to detail, watching her decorate the cake is mesmerising





my kids are all forming a big group hug and I'm bawling I'm gonna call the BBC to complain for causing emotional distress

 Source: choux-hury #gbbo #i love found families

 21,683 notes


Peggy Brown
oh my god the judges are coming out!!!








Peter: “I'm really proud of Abigail. She— [Peter clears throat, sniffs] she’s incredible, she’s clever, she’s determined, and she’s so so talented. I’m honoured to have to lost to her, really, because it means that I get to see her win, but she is going to be insufferable.”

Harold: "You know, it has been a lot of fun these past ten weeks. I am very lucky to have come this far, and I am honoured to have gotten into the tent in the first place. Abigail - she outshone all of us. She deserved that trophy, one hundred percent."

Molly: "Abigail performed phenomenally today, she outdid herself, she was constantly pushing at her own boundaries and constantly developing new skills, learning from old mistakes - she was fantastic."

Thomas: "Abigail has exceeded all our expectations. Her technical was perfect, she was daring and very brave with her signature and she came into the showstopper with her head held high. It's been a trying ten weeks for all of them, and they've all persevered, they've all come so far. They should all be proud."

Peter, Kim, Lesley, Bev, Jaget, and Dom just reunited and they're all taking turns hugging and congratulating Abigail



I can't believe Abigail Kamara invented baking

 Source: olympia #MY GIRL

 3,492 notes



BAKE OFF FINALE: Fortune favours the brave
By Daniel Hossack, 19th October, 2016


Remaining bakers: Peter, Abigail, Harold

From falling tiers to rising stars, from the unicorn head of bread to the leaning biscuit tower of Pisa, from Choco-gate to broken hearts to crumbled pies, we are finally at the Bake Off final. It has been an incredible ten weeks, readers. The finale was as intense and emotional as ever, we saw some old faces, we saw hugs and tears and emotional reunions, the Baking Golden Trio back together again and an unlikely victor.

Signature: 12 hand-shaped pies
I felt like the minute Molly said "we're looking for bold, daring flavours" the death knell for Harold tolled. His pies, while good-looking and well-flavoured, were filled with mixed berry compote, but simply a bit bland compared to what Peter and Abigail made. Abigail pulled out all stops and shaped her pies like marigolds and filled them with spiced orange and strawberries, drizzling white chocolate on top and incorporating spices into the crust.

Meanwhile Peter used his signature move of precision, ingenuity and 12 timers to make them stand out with apple and rhubarb pies spiced with chai and creme pat. Peter's signature was slightly crumbly, which is not something you want to hear in the finale, and Harold's were perfect, "but a bit bland", leaving Abigail in the clear lead.

Technical: Milhoja
The technical this week is of Argentinian origin, a complicated, delicate product that mixes dulce de leche with shortcrust pastry, which we know always ends well. Harold came last, seeing as his dulche was put on too hot and ran all over the place. Peter came second with a slightly under-tempered white chocolate. Abigail, not breaking her winning streak from the signature, came first with a well-set dulce de leche and a firm white chocolate filling.

Showstopper: 3-tiered Tea-infused Layer Cake
It doesn't get more British than tea-infused cake, does it? Amongst whining that GBBO is "not British enough" this year and accusations of "political correctness gone mad" that happens every time two or more non-white people are on television, Bake Off could not have chosen a more British signature for this year's finale.

Peter's cakes mixed East Asian flavours of green tea, jasmine and chrysanthemum that were used in moderation and perfectly blended into the sponge (learn from this, Zachary Palmer of week 2). Peter also went all out and fell back on his architecture skills for design, with spirals, dowering, meringue top and an intricately designed pattern that looked immensely impressive, but eventually turned out to be too overwhelming in its detail to taste the tea. His cake was in the shape of a Chinese dragon, keeping with the theme. I personally loved it - it was out there, it was bold and it looked stunning. He's had problems for weeks with focusing on the details and good time management, and he's improved a lot over the weeks. He's was a brilliant finalist.

Since the judges were looking for simple, I was expecting Harold to fare better, with classical English teas of Earl Grey and English Breakfast (one of which comes from China, but sshhhh don't tell the Express). Harold's cake was in the shape of a locomotive train, with all the bells and whistles. He got points for originality, and it's surprising he made it this far by sticking to his guns and doing it well.

Abigail went with Chai Masala and Rooibos, two classic mixes that went into a vanilla genoese with spiced buttercream finish and fruit compote middle. Her design was something awe-inspiring to see, combining sugarwork and classical designs that wowed. Her finished product took on the theme of a simplified Taj Mahal, and she did it brilliantly. Abigail was a wild card from the beginning, going up and down on the technicals and the signatures and doing a lot for herself every showstopper. But she was always determined and always had a glint in her eye that hinted at brilliance - and I have to say, she definitely deserved to be the winner.




Soon, the disillusionment would settle in. Soon, they would dispel the rumours. Soon. Until then, might as well keep the publicity going, keep nudging and winking at each other while knowing full well that it's all in jest.

But Grant made it to the final, along with Abigail Kamara and Harold Postmartin. The Daily Mail called into question the extent of the BBC's “political correctness” and The Express hand-wrung about national identity. In an intense, gut-clenching finale that saw Kamara crowned winner, we were ready to let go of the inside joke that we had shared with 10 million other people.

It had been a good ten weeks - hashtags, screenshots, minor scandals and the national joke that was Choco-gate - this was something that we'd silently agreed would stay within the confines of Bake Off. We contemplated the nature of "Britishness" and why they chose the people they chose, the diverse group who came from all over the country will all kinds of different backgrounds.

But the story didn't quite end there. Their relationship came to a quiet fruition when the two started dating in secret - fuelled by the public reception and re-evaluation of their respective perceived unrequited emotions, Grant decided to make the first move.

Chapter Text




“We were supposed to keep away for a bit after the finale,” Grant says. “Keep it low profile. We went on a couple of dates, no one noticed, we went on a couple more.”

He finally got Molly DuFae's approval after their fourth date. “We had dinner, all three of us, she asked some pointed questions and gave me the shovel talk”- Nightingale buries his face in one hand at this - “and, you know what? I think she liked me.”

 “He made me feel like I was sixteen and stupid all over again,” Nightingale confesses. “I hadn't felt this way about anyone in years.” Grant's cocky grins fades into something more rueful and he ducks his head.

The beginning of their relationship was easy - Nightingale was taken with Grant's confidence and charm, his exuberant curiosity and enthusiasm to learn. Where Nightingale was brought up to maintain a constant image gentlemanly stoicism, Grant was open, passionate and disarmingly honest. In an interview with Radio 4 earlier this year, he recalls how Grant would seek him out after the filming ended, looking for answers - not out of misguided judging or perceived unfairness, but for him to elaborate on a critique, or a technical skill, or experimental thought-exercises. Grant was insatiably curious about the science of baking, constantly exploring and constantly full of questions that even Nightingale sometimes struggled to answer.

“Being around him was exhausting and was exhilarating,” Nightingale says. “I've never given much thought about alternating too much from the norm, and then there he came bounding in, suddenly doing my head in with all the hypothetical thought experiments. One week it would be mixing rising agents for alternative flours, another week it would be about different altitudes and climates and their cultural influences.”

He shakes his head, grinning. “And then, when I did a bit of research, I had something to fire back at him. After that, I realised I couldn't stop.”

As for Grant, he claims that “it was love at first sight.”


The Guardian
Abigail Kamara writes about family, food and being flung into showbiz


From: Peter Grant [20:50]
i had a good time last night

From: Thomas Nightingale [20:52]
So did I.

From: Peter Grant [20:59]
so maybe we could do it again?

From: Peter Grant [21:17]
i have been wanting to ask you out for like 4 months

From: Thomas Nightingale [21:40]
This is still improper. I'm a judge. You're 20 years younger than me and a former contestant.

From: Peter Grant [21:42]
are we just stating facts now? i can do that too
flambé is overrated
americans use too much sugar

From: Peter Grant [21:49]
your eyes look amazing up close and i did half the risky shit i did just so i could stare at you

From: Peter Grant [21:50]
wait shit forget that last bit
forget that last bit

From: Peter Grant [21:59]

From: Peter Grant [22:10]
also i'm only 12 years younger.

From: Thomas Nightingale [22:46]
I really think we ought to talk. 

From: Peter Grant [23:39]
i'm downstairs.



Going for Broke: Abigail Kamara is still aiming higher 
By Peggy Brown, November 1st, 2016

She may be the youngest winner of the Great British Bake Off, but Abigail Kamara is not done yet. In an interview with the Guardian, Kamara talks book deal, childhood, and life 3 weeks later. 

Things have been busy for nineteen-year-old Abigail Kamara, the journalism student from London University College and youngest Bake Off winner ever. Only three weeks after the Bake Off finale, her life has already turned upside down with new opportunities, openings and goals. 

Not only has she recently scored a book deal, as is usual for all Bake Off contestants, there is a TV show in talks as well. Penguin will be publishing Kamara's up-and-coming cookbook From Scratch, a guide to more elaborate cooking and baking on basic ingredients and minimal budget. While the main audience is aimed to be students, she says that she hopes the book will also help families living in poverty - which is why she's making the e-book available online for free.

Coming from a working-class background herself and having grown up in a council estate, Kamara wants to make her cooking accessible and available to other young people she grew up and she shares a background with. Writing for the Guardian two weeks ago, Kamara talks about the overwhelming politicisation when it comes to the issue of food and poverty and high standards set upon poor people and food consumption. She made jabs at Jamie Oliver's 2008 show Eat to Save Your Life and its condescension in it attempt to "educate" the eating habits of the poor, which she received some backlash from. 

"I grew up with both my dad and my mum working pretty hard jobs. Mum's worked different jobs in retail and dad worked in construction for fourteen years. And there was a lot of sentiment going around a couple of years ago about obesity and poverty and how we had to 'teach' poor people to eat well, like we were too stupid to know what was good for us. It's not that Jamie Oliver spearheaded that, but I think he was definitely the face of a movement that made it popular. Mum made great food, she's a fantastic cook and she taught me everything I knew about food, but sometimes she'd come home from a 12-hour shift and just bang something ready-made in the oven."

Her mother's cooking style was to use the simplest ingredients to make fast, healthy and nutritious food. It had to be easy to cook, fast to clean up and cheap to make. "There would be big, elaborate meals and family gatherings on the weekends a few times each month. Everyone would bring one plate, and usually there would be a lot left over for us to eat over the week. In my household, very little food would get thrown away." But during the weekdays, it was simple, homecooked meals. Her relationship with food was a sentiment Kamara brought into the Bake Off tent. While it's well known that nothing goes to waste on the show, a bake that got badly judged would be noticeably less popular. Not to Kamara, who would always take the leftovers home. 

"Someone put a lot of effort into it. Someone made it with passion. And there'd always be someone sitting dejectedly by it. So if it's not, like, raw meat on the inside I'd ask them I could take them home, if they weren't going to have it, and usually I'd add something to make it better."

Coincidentally, she grew up in the same neighbourhood as Peter Grant, another Bake Off finalist. Did they know each other? "Peter moved out a couple of years after my family moved in, so we never met. I think our parents know of each other, though. We became pretty close during filming, and we bonded a lot over our old neighbourhood. He's lovely - he's like a big brother to me, they were all like family in a way, but Peter always brought a really positive attitude to the tent."

Her book, she explains, will range from comfort food, to family meals, to school dinners and use cheap, simple and nutritional ingredients "that can easily found at corner shops". Kamara's cooking methods will invoke her mother's methods, hoping to infuse interesting flavours and different techniques - something that she was famed for on Bake Off. She hopes that the book will let people find joy in cooking; failing that, she hopes that it will ease the chore. With several other publishing houses queuing up for more, a Guardian food column lined up and a TV show in the talks, it looks like her future in the culinary world is bright and solid - but Kamara is going for broke. She says that she is still interested in pursuing a career in journalism.

"It's easy to get swept up in the whole hurricane that is showbiz. My parents wanted me to take whatever opportunities that get flung my way, take what jobs I can, but I've been talking with the rest of the Bake Off crew and I've been insistent that whatever I do, doesn't compromise my morals."

Her parents have been encouraging - despite their initial wishes for her to go remain in school, they are supportive of any future career path.

"Baking in the tent tested new boundaries for me. It made me realise what I could push myself to, what limits and boundaries I had that I could easily break should I put my mind to it. I think this has given me a huge leg up into the industry. I love what's happening right now, and I am really grateful for the opportunities I've been given and the doors that this has opened," she says with a huge grin. "But journalism is still my true passion. It's something I've wanted to do since I was twelve and I don't want to sway too far from it. I've seen how the industry works now, and I've learnt so much, but it's not enough. I'm still aiming higher."

Kamara's book From Scratch will be published in January 2017. Pre-order it here from The Guardian bookstore.



BuzzFeed UK
23 reasons we love Abigail Kamara and why you should too

Lesley May
I would die on a battlefield for Abigail Kamara




I woke up next to you today and could hardly believe it wasn't a dream

You're the most delightful sight to fall asleep to

I spent seven long months

You will never have to go through the media wringer the way I did if it means I have to stop them myself

It terrifies me that I'm going to mess this up and lose you

gone to get coffee and breakfast. Nothing in your fridge is edible, how do you live like this? you're supposed to be a chef and a functioning adult
— xxx <3 peter

ps. if i promise not to freak out, could you say all that stuff you wrote to my face?

pps: dear god your handwriting is awful.



From: Molly [09:47]

From: Thomas [10:19]
This is a production seminar, stop texting me

From: Molly [10:27]
have a good weekend? ;)

From: Thomas [10:32]
I have been betrayed by you in every single way it is possible to be betrayed.

From: Molly [10:34]
that hickey on your neck says otherwise ;)
stop trying to cover it up and wear it with pride.

From: Thomas [10:37]
Do not speak to me. You gave my address to Peter didn't you

From: Molly [10:39]

From: Molly [10:59]

From: Molly [11:20]
Thomas Nightingale I have known you since you were 16, I will play dirty



from: Thomas <3 [17:39]
What on earth is "tinhatting" and RPF?

from: Peter [18:01]
wth? how?? why??

from: Thomas <3 [18:03]
I came across it on Twitter. It was something that came up in relation to... us. I didn't dare Google it yet.

from: Peter [18:04]
okay, listen to me.
the internet contains some very beastly things

from: Peter [18:06]
Abs has internet friends taking care of that side of things.
she has people her end who’ve.....let's say handled this sort of situation before

from: Thomas <3 [18:10]
Are you talking about porn? I'm pretty sure I won't faint at the sight of a bare ankle. 

from: Peter [18:19]
amongst other things

from: Peter [18:20]
but, okay. look.

from: Peter [18:24]
as someone invested in your sanity and keen to bring you into the 21th century in one piece
(without breaking your spirit/brain/faith in humanity)
trust me when i say that
there’s nothing on the other side of that google search that would profit you to see



Jaget Kumar
Moving to London for a couple of months - i'm gonna miss home, but duty calls

Look who i ran into

Kimberly Reynolds
I don't want to sound like a walking cliché, but all of us coming together again almost seems like fate!

Beverly Brook 
OMG I'm staying in London as well, I'm doing a charity project in Camden for the next few weeks

Dominic Croft
Hereforshire is a bit far, but there's lots of orders from London. Organic home bakery is (almost) a go

Got together with these nerds during the weekend! It felt like a class reunion. I've really missed everyone

Abigail Kamara
wish i could have been there, the beeb has been keeping me busy

Beverly Brook
We missed you Abs!! Next time we'll smuggle out of the bbc for an afternoon





from: K. Reynolds [07:48]
SO, out of curiosity, when exactly did you get together?

from: K. Reynolds [09:01]
I know you said about a month ago, but what date? Just so we can remember your anniversary

from: Peter Grant [09:23]
...who's running the bet?

from: K. Reynolds [09:30]
Not me. And I declined to participate out of respect, both to you and to God.

from: Peter Grant [09:31]
who's running the bet reynolds

from: K. Reynolds [09:40]
It was Sahra. I'm only asking because i drew the short straw

Peter Grant [10:52]
july 19th we went out for lunch, oct 20th was our first date, i kissed him oct 21th. good luck sorting it out.

from: Lelsey [13:52]
fuck's sake peter you just made me lose the bet, the pot had like 500 quid

from: Peter Grant [14:02]



from: Molly [22:40]
didn't want to be That Person during dinner, but goddamn. What a catch.

from: Molly [22:49]
I already knew I liked him, but I think he might just be good for you.

from: Abdul [22:51]
Dinner was great, see you for book meeting on Thurs.

from: Abdul [22:59]
And getting to meet Peter was great too. Treat him well, Thomas. Don't break his heart.



from: Mama [18:40]
when r u coming for saturday dinner ? auntie jem's family cancelled, it's just 3 of us

from: Peter [20:51]
actually, make that 4. i'm bringing someone. there's someone I want you to meet.



From: Ty [06:05]
Get to the office ASAP.



They eventually revealed their relationship to friends and family, including the other contestants. Nightingale met with Grant's family in a small gathering in Kentish Town, something that Grant tells me is a rare occasion - usually his family dinners are gatherings of at least a dozen people.

Outside of the Bake Off tent, Grant's sense of humour is still sharp, precise and fatal. He has a brilliant knack for defecting uncomfortable questions with sardonic jokes that border on self-deprecating but really turns back on you. It seems that he has stowed this side away for the interview, but on Twitter, he had no qualms about calling out arrogant users, microaggressions or commenting on unfair media coverage. Here, while Grant doesn't seem keen to reveal too much of his emotions, he does opt to divulge colourful personal anecdotes.

He reels me in with a story their disastrous second date, and how he almost blew it by playing too safe, then running back in the rain to make up for it. This veers into another story, one about an experiment on humidity and the rising of yeast, one that ended up with him being tricked into standing in the rain for about thirty minutes.

He speaks of the Bake Off hosts with affection, and of the contestants with unabashed love; their support had been a life-saver during the first week of the scandal, he confesses, and it took form of an ill-advised sleepover involving copious amount of alcohol, junk food and bad rom-coms. During the show's airing they had all egged him on to “make a bloody move already”, the running commentary on twitter reminiscent of teenage wolf-whistles and adolescent hooting. “They actually meant it," Grant says. “They were really rooting for us, which I wasn't expecting. They were really invested in us, for some reason.”

The contestants of the 2016 series of Bake Off had become a tight-knit lot, and it showed when they were sent home one by one. Star Bakers were congratulated, tears were shed over the eliminated and when push came to shove, they all banded together and rallied behind Grant. A memorable incident had been when 2015 contestant Martin Chorley went on Twitter on a rage-spiel keen to dissect the intentions and integrity behind the affair. It made a spectacular, eviscerating show of a mundane topic that held the gravitas of an official inquiry and the situation was thoroughly mocked and jeered. Not unlike a village head-hunt, Chorley was run out of twitter and officially banned from the scattered group of bakers from previous years who conversed, jokes and cajoled each other on social media.

They're warm, quirky, vivid stories and he tells them with animated fervour, but they are also completely safely removed from anything too personal. Grant reveals just enough to give off the illusion that he's revealed a lot. (In another life, I imagine that Grant would have made an incredible reporter). In any case, it painted the picture of them as a happy couple just at the end of the honeymoon period, slowly ebbing into a steady comfort around each other.

Looking at the two of them, I can't help but think back to the pictures that leaked, splashed across the front pages of the red tops and passed around on social media like a shameful secret. In any other context, they would be mundane day-to-day affairs of a couple enjoying a day out, not warranting any more than a half-page spread in Hello magazine; exiting a rugby game, walking through a park and sitting at a restaurant. But here, they were incriminating shots that went viral. They had only had one month of honeymoon bliss before it all went public.

Chapter Text


Taken at night by the busy exit of the Soho tube station, were three grainy photos of Nightingale adjusting Grant's scarf before pulling him into a kiss, his face soft with naked adoration. It was a scene of incredible intimacy - and at once it spread like wildfire across social media and newspapers, a tender, private moment unceremoniously exposed to the mercy and judgement of the British public. It had been twenty four days since the finale aired, and the first wave of coverage were a ruthless, endless deluge of Nightingale's past loves, losses and grievances.

There was, of course, egregious mentions of his past relationship with Mellenby, vivisected and pulled apart, rumours of his past with Molly DuFae, and open speculation about his presumed attraction to previous contestants. It was gruelling to watch, but watch we did with equal amounts of bile fascination and unquenchable curiosity. There was always something deeper, always more filth to be dug out. On the one hand there were American election news trickling in; on the other hand, there was this.

Still, even all this turned out to only be the placeholder while the press was digging into Grant's background. It makes sense now, why during those few weeks, it appeared as though Nightingale was hoarding the spotlight, with appearances on a variety of talk shows from Radio 4 to Loose Women soon after; his intention was to protect Grant from the worst of it.

At first, Grant goes for a firm but polite “Not the best of weeks” while Nightingale opts for silent grimace. Nightingale has maintained a consistent radio silence since, and questions about it, while not off-limits, have been dodged with a well-honed expertise.




Cecelia Tyburn
to me

Dear Alexander,

I believe we have a code red. Running damage control with Varvara, please don't panic. You'll have to be the one to tell Abdul, I'm afraid.


Sent from my iPhone


Alexander Seawoll
to me

that poor man is on holiday


Sent from my Samsung Galaxy








Daily Mirror
EXPOSED: Bake Off judge and finalist caught in a red-velvet romance

The Sun
Bake Off's Thomas Nightingale caught in gay tryst with contestant Peter Grant

Daily Mail Online
Thomas Nightingale and Peter Grant photographed mid lip-lock in SoHo

Daily Express
CAUGHT ON CAMERA: Romantic smooch causes Bake Off scandal



From: Cecelia Tyburn
Sent: 15th November, 2016, 10:32
To: Abdul Haqq Walid, Thomas Nightingale, Alexander Seawoll
Cc: Richard Folsom, Fleet Thames, Frank Caffrey
Subject: Media strategy meeting 


The minutes, as discussed:

-Cecelia will work on getting a statement out ASAP

-Thomas and Peter should remain on the downlow for a while, but their eventual relationship status will be up to them

-Varvara is currently in talks with the BBC, we will wait for their official stance on Thomas' future with GBBO before negotiating a new contract for him

-After looking into options of taking out an injunction, we have decided that it will only make matters worse

-Frank will be looking into possible solutions to slander

-Richard and Fleet will take over PR duties for the rest of the contestants, including continuous mentorship and finding agencies to represent Lesley May, Beverly Brook and Jaget Kumar, and other contestants as necessary

-Cecelia and Varvara will take care of the media strategy for damage control on this; however, as discussed, it is vital that these positions are given certain leeway and flexibility. 

-As Thomas requested, Peter's job and well-being must be given top priority whenever possible.

Best Regards
Cecelia Tyburn
Head of Public Relations and Communications
Folly Productions








"great british bake off scandal" okay but u know what else is scandalous? 300 years of imperialism.

i mean i personally don't think that 12 people baking in a tent and helping eachother is imperialist propaganda, especially in comparison to how much of the current American popular media is blatant military glorification that normalises hyperaggressive military tactics, dehumanises impoverised non-white countries (whose poverty they have a hand in creating, if not actively contributed to), and contributes to the war industrial complex, but. okay.

Source: pastel-maozedong    #ah yes: Bake Off Discourse #It has Started   #[eliza voice] it's only a matter of tiiiiiiiime

948 notes


All about Thomas and Molly's saucy past: Insider source dishes all

Daily Mirror
Ex-Boyfriend David Mellenby in shock!

Who else in the tent caught his eye? Thomas Nightingale might have a type

Daily Mail Online
Does Thomas like the bad boys? Peter Grant's past is not exactly saintly

I'm so angry at the article I can hardly speak. There is absolutely no proof behind their accusations 

Dominic Croft
they're just basing it off rumours and circumstantial evidence, it's bullshit and it's unfair to Peter

Daily Express
Peter's not the first: sources say previous Bake Off contestants might have caught Thomas' eye

"Zach Palmer definitely failed to charm" I'M PERFECTLY FUCKING CHARMING YA GOBSHITES!!!!!!!!!

"He was definitely taken with Stephen's dreamy grey orbs" leave me and me balls out of this, it's medical condition okay??

Ryan Carroll
"He and Ryan Carroll had a lot of chemistry" first time i fecking heard about it, the times i got a bollocking for underbaked pastry

Melissa Osborne
Is really pulling into this? He's married for goodness' sake!

Kimberley Reynolds
"we knew Kim was not here to make friends" certainly not with you assholes. I've seen corpses more charming than you.

go jerk off to princess Di and leave the real news to the big boys

 BuzzFeed UK
29 Hilarious reactions to the scandal that you HAVE to see



from: [Unknown Number] [11:00]
Paparazzi have surrounded your office building. Loading entrance in 10 mins. Black Audi A5 Sedan. Don't be late.

from: Peter Grant (#8) [11:02]
Who are you???

from: [Unknown Number] [11:03]
I’m the Folly’s media strategist and I’m here to get you out of this mess in one piece.

from: Peter Grant (#8) [11:04]
???? I thought the Folly's PR person was Richard Folsom and Fleet. I worked with him when the show was airing?

from: [Unknown Number] [11:05]
They are my colleagues, they are taking care of more trivial matters. Stop asking so many questions, just come with me if you want to live. 



From: Varvara Sidorovna
Sent: 15th, November 2016, 11:32
To: Abdul Haqq Walid, Frank Caffrey, Cecelia Tyburn
Cc: Alexander Seawoll
Subject: Communication discretionary measures

Dear All, 

For legal reasons, Cecelia and I have been communicating via burner phones. I’d like to have plausible deniability for all involved from this point forward. We have 12 spare burners with prepaid SIM cards, we advice all involved to use them.

I have also distributed burners for Peter and Thomas to stay in contact. They should both be lying low for now, but it is crucial that they are able to communicate so we can co-ordinate the press and avoid any curveballs.

Warm regards, 
Varvara Sidorovna
Director of Legal & Commercial Affairs
Folly Productions



From: 07700 900566 [12:29]
paranoid much?

From: [Unknown Number] [12:31]
It isn’t paranoia if they’re actually out to get you, Sahra.

From: 07700 900566 [12:32]
good idea tho, makes me feel like i’m in a spy thriller conspiracy movie.

From: [Unknown Number] [16:39]
Good, because I need you to be my eyes and ears on Peter. You know I wouldn't ask this under any other circumstances, but I need to know what they're up to. I need to be able to prepare damage control in case any of them do anything stupid.


From: 07700 900566 [13:00]
jesus wept.

From: 07700 900566 [13:19]

From: [Unknown Number] [13:20]
Thank you, Sahra. I owe you one.

From: Herculass Mulligan [13:28]
u fucking better, u got me to swear in another religion. u giving us code names too? jst don't call me smth lame like james bond

From: Cecelia Tyburn [14:01]
Miriam, you know I am hesitant to ask you to abuse your friendship like this, but I need you to ask you to report back to me about Thomas’ situation. You’re the only person I can trust to do this, and the only person who might be willing. You’re already talking to him, and he trusts you. I need to get this under control, which means nothing out of the left field from either Peter or Thomas. I just want to be able to know ahead of time if they do anything rash, make any stupid decisions or get followed by the wrong people.


From: Miriam Stephanopolous [14:19]
You really have a fucking way with words

From: Miriam Stephanopolous [15:10]
Fine. I'm in.



from: more efficient than an army [15:00]
Our sleeper agents are in position. You actually believe this plan might work?


from: Night Witch [15:01]
one agent at the right place, at right time, with the right skills is all it takes. don't underestimate that. 






From: A.Seawoll [02:30]
At least there won't be any nudes or sex tapes. Never been more grateful for Thomas' long-lasting technophobia and fatal allergy to the 21st century. 

From: The Tyburn [03:11]
Indeed. Thank God for small mercies.

From: The Tyburn [08:20]
Releasing the official statement in one hour.



Daily Express
Bake Off stars Peter Grant and Thomas Nightingale confess they "tried to keep the relationship under wraps"

Mirror Celeb
Official statement from Thomas Nightingale: "Our affair had no influence on the outcome of the judging"

The Sun 
Bake Off gay tryst coverup confirmed  

Henry Pyke 
"We ask for privacy" Really? It's a bit too late for that. Should have considered it before you decided to be famous

Bradley Coopertown 
The way it's being covered it rather awful, but they really should have been more careful

Celia Munroe
They were only caught on camera because they were kissing in public. It was absolutely unnecessary for them to flaunt this in our faces.


from: 07700 900833 [09:57]
I never did say what I wanted to say to you, but I meant it. All of it. Even if I did throw it in the bin.


from: 07700 900923 [10:02]
yeah. me too. xxx <3



BBC releases official statement regarding Bake Off judging scandal

Robert Su
BBC released a statement to say that they have no statement...?

Celia Munroe 
Same wishy-washy crap from the Beeb, they really should be coming down hard on this. This is an issue of morally corrupting families and children.

they're playing it safe, they should be standing behind peter and thomas not wussing out



BBC's reaction to Starlingate is another betrayal of traditional values
Opinion - TV - Culture
By Sharon Pike | November 16th 2016

The BBC's moral failing is going to besmirch Bake Off's family friendliness

I am one of the few people old enough to remember, in vivid detail, the shock of the Angus Deayton scandal when it first broke in 2002. Previously a respected, deadpan host of BBC's long-running panel news show Have I Got News for You, Deayton became a topic of the headlines in May of 2002, having been caught up in an imbroglio with a prostitute and cocaine. The BBC wasted no time kicking him to the curb, following several weeks of apparently unending jokes and finally giving into moral comeuppance. So it is bizarre, to see the Starlingate scandal unfold today and compare the reaction from both BBC and the public. The BBC has not only renewed Nightingale's contract, it has offered a stance of support, and declined to chastise either of Grant or Nightingale.

Despite what the left-wing media proclaims, this is a moral failing from the BBC and moral failing for us all. Bake Off  is a family show, watched and loved by millions - it has been a bastion of regular comfort and routine wholesomeness, bringing joy to the living rooms of so many British homes. But recent years has seen it, too, bow down to political correctness and subsequently have so many changes made to it, to the extent that we can hardly recognise what it once stood for. Perhaps it started when Sahra Guleed took over as host after David Carey left, the BBC yet again caving into an overly sensitive audience. (Carey had made comments about immigration in the past that offended people). I adore Sahra on my screen - but the sequence of events that to her being added to the show is ridiculous.

While critics may say that comparing this relationship to that of Deayton's is too harsh, Grant is hardly an innocent man. He grew up in one of the most crime-riddled neighbourhoods in London, with high concentration of immigrants, an environment known for perpetuating anti-social behaviour. Another source says that he had been expelled from Hendon Police Academy and studied architecture as back-up.

Furthermore, it is unfair to other contestants. "Who knows if Abigail [Kamara] even deserved her place", another source said. "There were rumours that Nightingale deliberately didn't let Grant win so that his favouritism towards him wouldn't cause a full meltdown and cost him his job - after all, he had been very lenient on his bakes since early on."

Today we are overrun by "sensitivity politics" and the PC police telling us that it's homophobic to persecute a gay man for any reason, but younger journalists forget that it was the job of the newspapers to be the voice of critical dissent. Despite the internet's gnashing of teeth and their incessant declaration of this to be "unjust" "exploitative" coverage, the matter at hand still remains. Grant was given unfair advantage and possibly biased judging, which should have called into question the previous year's results. It would have happened, should this have occurred a few years ago, but the BBC has fallen to the culture of PC-ness and an oversensitive audience. Young people are heeding to modern "progressiveness politics" that silences any opposing moral stance they don't like and it's detrimental to culture of press freedom and the tradition of free speech.

Back to



William Skirmish
Is this the state of journalism these days? Personal attacks, digging up dirt and homophobic remarks? Disgusting. 

you forgot the racism




BBC releases statement about Starlingate: "We don't think that Nightingale's judgement was impaired or biased during Bake Off, nor do we think that Peter was given unfair advantage". However, they will not comment on the nature of their relationship, and claim that they had no awareness about it happening during the filming as they were not in charge of editing or filming.

Slightly disappointed, because the BBC could have given their support for one of their most valued TV personalities and their most valued show, instead they've opted for the easy way out. 

Source: sterling-gale    #gbbo #media crit #gbbo scandal for ts

8,609 notes




you know, it still pisses me off that this has been dubbed "starlingate", because not only does it just show that heteronormative society + media still sees love between queer people (esp qpoc, especially in interracial relationships) as inherently perverted or scandalous or dirty, its a label that sullies their name and their relationship in one go. gossip tabloids are just fucking evil.

Source: gingam-gods    #bake off wank #media stuff #british news #uk

12,039 notes


Simone Fitzwilliam
Peter & Thomas looked really happy in that photo, and they have every right to that happiness. This is so disheartening to see.

Melissa Oswald
Peter was lovely & always willing to lend a hand,Thomas was a gentleman,everyone coming after them like this is awful

this whole lark is ridic, you're two consenting adults!!

Kimberley Reynolds
is a disgrace to journalism

Dominic Croft
chin up mate, the press is gonna lose interest the minute a celeb couple breaks up. this will blow over soon enough

Kardashians has been looking rather strained lately......

Lesley May
The national reaction to this has been a fucking embarrassment. how sad do you have to be to dedicate your time judging stranger's relationships?

Jaget Kumar
cant believe that this is what the nation's been obsessed with. how dare 2 consenting adults make life decision that has nothing to do w us.




the fact that I haven't seen any of the leaked Starlingate photos on my dash means I am definitely following the right people

Source: sterling-gale

11,040 notes




gotta say i'm kinda disappointment that the biggest GBBO scandal this year was our nation's right-wing nutjob of a newpaper shitting itself over a judge showing a bit too much emotion.

yeah i think i may have wished on a monkey's paw on that one, sorry folks

Source: blakes-sevenhundred    #gbbo #...ya played yourself op

3,678 notes




From: Richard Lewis
Sent: 17th November, 2016, 10:30
To: All

Dear All,
It is to my regret that I announce that Peter will be taking leave of this company following the scandal happening in the newspapers. He has always been a valued member of our team, but he is currently unable to do his duties without interference from journalists. Peter was given long-term paid leave, but after some discussion yesterday, we agreed that he won't be able to continue with the company for an indefinite time and that his leaving would be to our mutual benefit. Arrangements are being made for his permanent departure in two months time. His current projects are on hold and will be distributed among the team.

Our PR department is preparing a statement for until after the media furore dies down, but for the time being it is vital that information about Peter, his personal life, his projects and so on stays strictly within the company. He was a respected and valued colleague within our company, with many great contributions to many projects. Out of respect for him, I ask that we keep this out of the press until Peter himself decides to reveal so.

Best regards,
Richard Lewis
Lewis Architecture Ltd




from: more efficient than an army [10:39]
New intel: "Mr Punch" is back and not backing down, I think he's employing the Nolan brothers to do his work. He claims to be in possession of illicit photos of Peter and Thomas in an "compromising position", is threatening to be selling them to the highest bidder. 

from: Night Witch [12:15]
I have bought us time. mail is still trying to decide what to be most offended about, sun, mirror and express email servers are childishly easy to break into. they are experiencing...inconveniences at their office.

from: more efficient than an army [13:10]
I've arranged a swap with Punch for £50,000, he will be at the Shard at 16:00 sharp today 

from: Night Witch [13:15]

Evening Standard
Man collapses near the Shard, with possible traces of unidentifiable virus in bloodstream; victim sent to UCH and is under 36hr quarantine 

Evening Standard
Three blocks of flats in Elephant and Castle emptied and evacuated after reports of mite infestation in vents, team of exterminators and fire service called in 



London Evening Standard

Kentish Town paparazzi are chased away by locals
By Reynard Fossman | 17th November 2016

Paparazzi trespassing in Kentish Town faced angry residents concerned with invasion of privacy 

Two paparazzi were attacked and chased off earlier today in Kentish Town towards early evening, after locals found them trespassing and attempting disturb the peace. The two men arrived around about 4 o'clock in the afternoon, as several eyewitnesses reported a "dodgy car parked outside" that was making rounds through the neighbourhoods. The car eventually came to a stop outside Peckwater Estates, where it dropped off two passengers with DSLR cameras and telephoto lenses. 

It is suspected that they were looking for The Great British Bake Off contestant Peter Grant, who had been in the centre of the media focus this week after news broke that he was in a relationship with judge Thomas Nightingale. Grant originally grew up in Kentish town's council estates, and his parents live there still - according to eyewitnesses, the paparazzi had followed several older and middle-aged women of Afro-Caribbean descent through the estate's gardens and courtyards in the belief that they would be able to locate Grant's resident. After the third such attempt, a group of local teenagers gathered together and surrounded them in the courtyard, blocking their passage. Witnesses overheard them chanting and threatening to "do them like the News of the World".

Locals quickly gathered at the scene, forming a small crowd of thirty to forty people. A middle-aged woman at the scene was reportedly furious at the violation of privacy, while several families shouted accusatory allegations that they were trying to photograph their children. While the paparazzi tried to explain themselves, saying they they were photojournalists, the situation quickly became heated when one of the paparazzi attempted to break free to chase after an elderly inter-racial couple that they believed to be Grant's parents. In retaliation, one resident who worked as a stage manager used their own personal strobe light to flood the courtyard, rendering the photo unusable. There were no injuries sustained during the confrontation, and no violence broke out as several older members of the community kept the peace and calmed everyone down.

The teens scattered when the police showed up, but several eyewitnesses stayed to give detailed reports. The teens were apprehended, but with no evidence found of wrong doing or illegal activity, no one was arrested. The two men were brought in on harassment charges, filed by one of the women they attempted to follow. They also reported later on that the data from their camera's memory chips had been irreparably corrupted. However, police could not link it to the teenagers at the scene and is still investigating.



Jaget Kumar
This is getting INSANE. I hope your mum's okay!

Dominic Croft
Agreed, this is getting out of hand. this kind of behaviour is not acceptable - from ANYONE, let alone paparazzi. sending thoughts to the Grant family

This is disturbing and completely disgraceful, but not at all surprising. Hope the family is okay, peter.

Peter Grant
Everyone sending their wishes: thanks!! mum&dad were away visiting my aunts that day, they're fine

Abigail Kamara
paps are scum. glad to hear the folks are alright.

Abigail Kamara
I know is gonna blow a gasket over this, but god do I love my neighbourhood. We look out for each other over there.



from Night Witch [22:10]
i have the photos along with all pictures from his laptop. nolans have been hung out to dry, are willing to talk. 

from: more efficient than an army [22:23]
Thank you for your work. 

from: more efficient than an army [22:27]
Also, mites? ...a little excessive?

from: Night Witch [22:38]
he used to work for news of the world.

from: more efficient than an army [22:44]
Well, in that case. Tell Frank I owe him a drink. 

from: more efficient than an army [23:50]
I think Punch has sold some pictures that we didn't get ahold of. Managed to talk the DM editor, they've backed down on the sex scandal. Still working on the smear campaign.

From: Night Witch [24:30]
does alexander still think that we're just making phone calls and calling favours, or does he suspect something else?

From: more efficient than an army [01:41]
He has no idea. Besides, you know what they say: in the eye of the hurricane, there is quiet.



From: Peter [22:39]
so who is this Tyburn woman and what exactly does she do....? can i trust her or will she kidnap me in a swanky black car?

From: Thomas [23:10]
Cecelia is here to help. Molly says to tell you to think of her as "the English lovechild between Olivia Pope, Lord Veterinary and Nick Fury, raised by Sophie Devereaux". 

From: Thomas [23:11]
I did not understand a single word of what I just wrote.  

From: Peter [23:22]
it's lord Vetinari, and it's a Pratchett reference, but thank you trying anyway 

From: Thomas [23:23]
Please don't patronise me. 

From: Peter [23:25]

From: Peter [23:49]
so if she is this media spindoctor genius, how come she's working for the folly? why hasn't she been snatched up by idk the royals or downing street? how can we even afford her fees?

From: Thomas [23:49]
Gift horse. Mouth.




From: Thomas [08:22]
I've made breakfast. Come over, Peter, we should talk.



From: Abdul Haqq Walid [11:39]
Heading to Thomas, Molly + Miriam is with him rn. He's been Talking about breaking up with Peter to keep him safe or smth. I need you to talk him out of this
From: Cecelia Tyburn [11:41]
Good call. A break-up would look like a coverup at this stage.

From: Abdul Haqq Walid [11:49]
a break-up would BREAK HIS HEART. 



From: Cecelia Tyburn [11:49]
Abdul says you’re considering breaking up with Peter. I would strictly advise against that.

From: Cecelia Tyburn [11:51]
Also, you should have talked to me first before Abdul.

From: Thomas Nightingale [12:01]
You may have strongarmed into being my publicist, but he is still my oldest friend. 

From: Cecelia Tyburn [12:09]
Low blow, Thomas. But fair enough.



Daily Mirror
All about Mellenby and Nightingale - historical recap!  

Daily Express
the BBC should take action to prevent another  

Daily Mail Online
All about Peter Grant: family, past and school that you never knew about, from all new inside source 

The Sun 
 Is all a stunt? 

Bitter break-up already? A frowning Peter spotted in Russell Square Park

Elizabeth Matthews
when r u gonna talk about how Diana would react to ? i'm sure the nation is desperate to know



From: Lesley [11:29]
I’m @ Peter’s place, he’s had a row w N & in a state + prob considerng barricading inside his house for 70 years & nvr coming out. Help me talk to him. -Les

From: Beverley Brook [13:30]
HI Sahra, Bev here. Me and Lesley are with peter we might need some help. Neither of us r good at pr & public relationship advice and we were wondering if you could come over for a bit?

From: [Unknown Number] [16:23]
on the move pos paps heading this way. miriam w t.n. 4 strat mtg, meet @ mine. br, guleed

From: Kimberley Reynolds [19:31]
Hey Jaget, we might need you at Guleed’s. Bring all the booze you can fit into a family-sized car and enough pizza for a small army on the run from the law. I'll send you the address. Best, Kim.

From: Jaget K [20:13]
domic, help





Saturday Kitchen
This Saturday we're joined by Molly DuFae, Bill Bailey, Frank Skinner and Sue Perkins at 9:00 AM on

Saturday Kitchen
VIDEO: Molly talks about the judging scandal: "It's preposterous"

"This obviously wasn't what I wanted to talk about about when you booked me, but I have to mention it because it's been infuriating. This is what I'll say: the judging was fair, and Abigail absolutely deserved her place. It is preposterous to insinuate otherwise. It's one thing to talk about Peter and Thomas, but to drag Abigail into this, to insinuate that she somehow didn't earn her place -- that is atrocious. It's absolutely appalling, what the media is doing. I just -- the Mail, the Express, the Sun, it's like they all didn't even watch the show.

And furthermore, I was the one who constantly championed for Peter to stay throughout the series, not Thomas. I saw potential in him, I saw his skill and his talent. Thomas was a professional and not in any way biased towards [Peter], and I stand by that. Anyone suggesting otherwise are falling for the press hysteria, and they should be ashamed."



Awkward reunion or secret side-tryst? David Mellenby spotted near Thomas' house in Russel Square Park

The Guardian
Opinion: We put Nightingale up on a pedestal and blamed him when we tore him down



From: Abs [21:49]
Bev How’s peter? I’ve been instructed by Effra to stay away + have interview 2day and 2morrow but is he alright? Is nightingale being a dick? 

From: Bev [21:50]
N is a sap + peter an idiot. Sahra & Reynolds are strategising, Kumar planning escape routes + safehouses, I will provide distraction fr press, Lesley + Dom 2 b cavalry. Enjoy your fame and limelight, stop worrying. Anyone says shit abt u, know that Sahra & Mols will fuck thm up. Bev <3

From: Abs [21:59]

From: Bev [22:07]
actually, we're just having a sleepover. rest up, we'll invite you eventually.



But perhaps, in hindsight, reaction to the scandal shouldn't have been all that that surprising. It was a narrative that had something for everyone, from the red tops to the broadsheets getting in their fair share of opinion pieces and columns. The Daily Mail and The Express had the full-house of moral dilemmas they could gasp and pearl-clutch over; the Guardian incorporated the socio-politics of class-race-sexuality into the coverage; the Sun had its own field day declaring it all to be a publicity stunt. Even after the tabloids milked all the readership they could out of it, the conversation wasn't over.

The subject of their relationship made its way into the pool of reference of the comedy world, turned into a punchline via talk shows, vicious panel banter and eventually stand-up comedy routines. Rob Brydon, guest hosting an episode of Nevermind the Buzzcocks, joked that "he won't give points to whoever bats their eyelashes at [him]", while on Mock the Week, Chris Addison said that a model for education reform could be based on Bake Off. "You get judged on how well you do on the whole instead of per subject, you get positive incentive for doing well, there's gonna be more focus on constructive criticism instead of punishing difficult students, and you can bang the teacher to get ahead". Like Bake Off itself, they became a topic of debate, joke and public discourse - unlike Bake Off, the conversation that ensued had hints of something less wholesome.

Following the breaking of the news, Nightingale said that biggest worry was how this would become Bake Off's defining moment in the future - that instead of being referred to as a quaint baking competition where people fussed over cakes, it would be known as the one where the judge and the contestant went for a tumble in the hay. And while the show has had its memorable disasters and shocking catastrophes, the scandals were fleeting in nature, its shattering consequences treated with a wink and smile. Was there really any long-term reputational damage after Bingate? Of course not - they were inconsequential to the turnings of the real world, and their triviality, like office gossip, was all part of the appeal.

But this had the air of something else, something heavier and more lurid. Not only were people getting hurt (there was an incident were two paparazzi tried to break into Grant's childhood home, and Grant was let go from his job shortly after), the public dug into all the sordid details with an air of vicious exuberance. For an audience that had previously celebrated the lighthearted kindness of Bake Off, all this was showing a more gruesome side of them. Handled well, it would go down as one of the many eventful stories in the history of the show - handled badly, it would become an ugly scorch mark that marred its reputation.

Chapter Text


Neither Grant nor Nightingale had given interviews in the immediate aftermath, instead opting for to just battening down the hatches and waiting for it to blow over. They'd hoped that it would soon fade from the public memory after a few days, but as the scandal dragged on with more developments and sordid details, the less likely that would seem.

Looking back at it, it had all the feats of great literary irony. For one, Grant would never have been under so much scrutiny if it weren't for Nightingale's position in the public eye. For another, the "controversy" was hyped up out of nothing. This would never have been a big deal had they come out at their own accord, but because the press caught them, it was suddenly framed as a conspiracy-like cover-up. The ordinary became illicit, the consenting relationship between two adults became a spectator sport, and it was beginning to look as though they were in it for the long haul. Despite a period spent apart, it was becoming obvious that the media furore was not going to die down or go easier on either of them.

Perhaps it had been naive for them to think that it would - after all, it was in the nature of the show and our love for it to make the most out of the smallest controversies. In the years since it premiered, Bake Off has burrowed itself into the cultural consciousness and is just as much about the public discourse as the competition. The show has simply become the vehicle through which the narrative is delivered, but the true life of the show comes from the ripples it creates. Discussion boards, newspaper columns, social media, water coolers - Bake Off's cultural resonance has left a permanent footprint in the ever-shifting sands of popular culture.

As many, many articles about “the magic of Bake Off” explains, it is also a feat in tolerance and camaraderie, an idyllic one hundred square metres of canvas and gingham that symbolised the charm of English countryside and its genteel dignity. It had a diverse group of misfits, full of quirk and character, and made us believe that the world is just a little better than it is.

The truth is, the media became so consumed with their story because we liked the idea of Grant, then the idea of Grant and Nightingale, much in the same way that we like the idea that of what Britishness is, as presented by Bake Off. Bake Off does not embody the characteristics of sheer Britishness so much as it embodies what we want Britishness to be. Much like a forlorn millionaire looking into the green light of a distant harbour, our obsession with the Great Britishness of Bake Off only reflected what we wanted to see; we want to seem respectable and respected, we want to be affable and chummy, we want to be sportsmanlike and supportive.

And if Bake Off displayed the best side of that, then the scandals that we are inexplicably drawn to simply reflect the uglier underbelly that comes with it.



Melissa Osborne
I try to be nice, but if I get one more tabloid journalist trying to get me to say the judging was unfair I WILL set my bees on you

Dominic Croft
best tools against home invasion in the history of mankind. I use the husband's pitchforks. scares the Mail right off!



Peter Grant
this is getting tiring. it's been over a week and it's not ending and it's getting tiring.

Peter Grant
not that i don't enjoy the endless chocolate jokes (never heard that one before, guys! next up, you'll be preforming live the Apollo!)

Peter Grant
and if i could, i'd have played it differently the second time round. but. that's not the point.

Peter Grant
first: I didn't sleep with Thomas Nightingale to get ahead. 

Peter Grant
second: whatever happened, happened not only after filming but after airing.

Peter Grant
third: i shouldn't have to apologise or justify this, because what we did wasn't wrong. We were having a moment in public.

Peter Grant
that doesn't entitle the press to the rest of our private lives. that's really all i have to say.



From: T N [12:07]
Hi Lesley, how is everything going? Cecelia said there was some kind of...dinner party? Are you managing to avoid the press alright? I know that Peter's has said that his job has given him leave for a while, but I do hope he doesn't attract more unwanted attention, it won't help the situation any. I really do appreciate you keeping me updated, I know how much your friendship means.

Best Regards, Thomas


From: Lesley May [12:19]
1- good
2- it's a sleepover with booze
3- yes
4- ik
5-not paid enough for this tbh
6- you need to get your shit together and apologise, you broke his fucking heart you emotionally constipated twat 




I shouldn't have to say this, but if I see one person saying that Abigail probably didn't deserve her place using some shitty roundabout logic, I will come after you with all my 5'2 body and scottish anger, I am 100% serious about this

Source: sterling-gale #Abigail Kamara defense squad

3,582 notes



From: Abs [20:45]
u guys still at guleed's? i'm done for the day, i'm coming over.  

From: Bev [20:51]
There's some pizza left and a ton of baked stuff, but you're not touching the booze. I'll send you the address.  



This Morning 
Join us tomorrow at 10:30 on ITV as Bake Off's Miriam Stephanopolous () comes to talk with us about her upcoming tour and chicken farming!








Daily Express
The Break Off: Are we seeing the end of?

Heat Magazine
Insider sources say Peter is HEARTBROKEN after split from Thomas!

Daily Mirror
Peter finally speaks about

Daily Express
Peter Grant on : "What we did wasn't wrong"

Daily Mail Online
Opinion: Sorry Peter, but you're wrong: this IS of the public interest

The Guardian
Opinion: "The idea that the press has a right to the privacy of public figures is extremely entitled"



Sahra Guleed 
's commentary about Starlingate on This Morning is just  

"What people are forgetting is that they are not doing anything wrong. I think it's time we stopped calling it a scandal and called it what it is - it's media sensationalism. There is nothing scandalous about it aside from two adults getting into a relationship and the only reason- the only reason everyone is so up in arms is because they defy certain social norms that people are comfortable with. The media made a lot out of nothing, and everyone went along with it.

Sahra Guleed 
And I'm looking forward to your tour as well, of course!

Henry Pyke
First Molly, now Miriam. Why's Nightingale getting his friends to fight his battles for him? He should go on himself if he's not a coward. 



Abigail Kamara
i've been told not to say anything about , but i don't care, i'm fed up with the accusations and watching from the sidelines

Abigail Kamara
we need to examine how we look at public personas and sexuality, we need to examine how we react to media hysteria

Abigail Kamara
Everyone was joking about "sparks" flying when the show was airing, everyone loved toying with the idea of Peter and Thomas being a thing

Abigail Kamara
But now that they've gotten together, they're being crucified. You loved seeing them as a fun hashtag; but not idea of seeing them as actual human beings

Kimberley Reynoldsn
Remember how the papers were all gushing about "respect and kindness" on Bake Off and tieing it in with Inherent Britishness of it all.

Kimberley Reynolds
All that hand-wringing over "preserving Britishness" when it was actually because there were too many black and brown people on telly.

Kimberley Reynolds
Look how long that lasted. All ho-huming and putting down poc in the name of national identity, and this is what is comes down to.

Abigail Kamara
shame on you for your scaremongering and moral guardian high horse

Abigail Kamara
shame on your for using Peter's race to paint that age-old, racist narrative of black men as hypersexual and threatening

Abigail Kamara
shame on you for thinking I didn't earn my place

Abigail Kamara
this is why traditional journalism is dying a slow painful death. this is why newspapers are being carved up and sold.

Abigail Kamara
this is why people trust COMEDIANS instead of newspapers. 

Abigail Kamara
i'm using my publicity to go into journalism instead of writing some puff piece food column. this. is. why.

Nicky Minaj 



you know my name
Are we really going to believe what the BBC publicists are putting out and the online "support" from the contestants?

you know my name
This is a coverup and a desperate PR spin. Wake up people, this is Malcolm Tucker’s protege working behind the scenes here,

you know my name
she is a pro at working the media, the whole thing is a distraction to cover up the fact that Abigail winning was a fluke.

you know my name
I know it’s not PC to say that, but it must be considered. You can’t believe that Nightingale’s judgement was non-biased after this

you know my name
And this just raises the question - how many other series has fallen victim to biased judging?

you know my name
How many other affairs have there been that we haven’t heard about? That were buried?

you know my name
Honestly, I thought he was harsh on Grant for no reason. Well maybe this was the reason. Letting him win would make it look bad.

you know my name
Remember: the truth is power. DO NOT let them pull the wool over our eyes



from: Night Witch [18:03]
last year's runner up kicking up a fuss. strategy?

from: more efficient than an army [18:05]
No need. Let the torches and pitchforks take care of him. They eat their own on the internet. 




Bake Off drama escalates as former runner-up bashes contestant, faces backlash, deletes twitter
Mirror Entertainment > TV
23rd November 2016 | Albert Mulder


Social Media is a harsh mistress, as former Bake Off contestant finds out after sending off a series of inflammatory tweets.

IT HAS BEEN A very trying two days for businessman, investment adviser and runner-up of the 2015 The Great British Bake Off, 47-year-old Martin Chorley. He never got much sympathy from Bake Off audiences last year, despite week after week of producing perfect, effortless bakes that put him easily in the finals. In fact, one of his most memorable feats during the show's 2015 run was that no one could recall his face or personality, despite his ten weeks on screen - something that the fans noticed, many taking to using his initials to nickname him “The Faceless Man”. After going in to attack Thomas Nightingale and Peter Grant on Twitter, the financier was ready to rant about accountability and morals of the popular baking contest. Now that one of the judges had shacked up with another baker, to the shock of the British public, Chorley deemed himself judge, jury and executioner in a one-man formal inquiry on Twitter. 

Tweeting at user handle @maskerades Chorley took to social media last night to express his rage, demanding that 19-year-old winner Abigail Kamara’s first place be called into question. “We can’t trust that Nightingale’s judgement is fair or objective any more, now that the affair’s come to light,” he wrote on Monday afternoon. “What if he was covering it up? That he let Abigail win just so he could get with Peter Grant without being called out on it?”. It’s not that he thinks Abigail shouldn't have won, or that he’s bitter to have lost last year - “it’s just that it’s not fair to other bakers, who might have gone out unfairly because Nightingale wanted to keep his crush in the tent.”

So, does that mean that Chorley thinks he should have been the winner last year? “Of course not, I’m not doing it to raise myself up. But I do wonder - how objective was the judging? Was there someone else in the tent that caught his eye?” This ignores, of course, that Peter himself was harshly judged during the show’s earlier weeks, so much so that audiences almost called it a scandal - something that other contestants of the 2016 series were quick to point out. 

He goes on to talk about the integrity of the publicity surrounding the affair - namely the trustworthiness of the woman behind it all, Cecilia “Lady Ty” Tyburn, the public relations manager of Bake Off's production company, Folly Productions. Famously educated under Malcom Tucker, Tyburn's media experience also came under attack by Chorley, who held court with the seriousness of a law enforcement bribery scandal. He goes on to declare that from now on, the British audience “can’t trust a thing out of their mouths, can't trust that this has never happened before and was subsequently buried". He goes on to ask, “How many unfair judgements has Thomas Nightingale made in the past?”. He ends his 12-piece rant with the final tweet “The truth is power,” like a digital-age prosecuting barrister.

After that underbaked attempt at piping the narrative to his favour, however, Chorley quickly learned that the internet's opinion was not a dough easily manipulated as both fans and his fellow contestants turned against him. “I thought baking is power,” tweeted Jaget Kumar (@Kmarsh), quoting the now-viral speech that Chorley made to last year's winner Elizabeth Matthews. 

Zachary Palmer (@BoomZachaZacha) tries to deflate the situation with “Give it up man, no one likes a sore looser” while Beverly Brook (@BrookNoBullshit) ironically suggested that Bake Off contestant should submit to an official inquiry. “Yummiest bread basket wins a kiss from Sahra, loser has to buy Molly’s monthly supply of gin.” Semi-finalist Lesley May (@essexmayhem) simply suggested that Chorley should “go on Jeremy Kyle with that info”. Beekeeper Melissa Osborne (@hivesomecake) jokingly asked “Have you told anyone else??? Reynolds might put you in protection” referring to the ex-FBI agent now based in London and the show's first American baker. Reynolds (@k_reynolds) simply sent him the web address for the FBI witness protection programme.

Ex-police constable Dominic Croft (@croftsmanship) simply put forward the possibility that “if Bake-Off had a juicy cover up, then it only made sense that Strictly was run by aliens”. Sky Gardens (@airplanewindows), who left the first week, simply replied with a screencap of David Duchovny as Fox Mulder captioned with “Scully, you're not gonna believe this”.

A more viscous comeback were from the fans, who weren't keen on keeping it politely chilly. @robert_su tweeted that “reading that felt so much like re-living the Trump campaign it gave me a headache and took another 10 years off my life”. @NeckingR chimed in with “listen m8, unless u plan to tweet your way into getting a time machine, you ain't doing jacksh*t to change things”. @madam_teng tweeted "I know stopping while you're ahead isn't your style, but just this once realise that you're digging your own grave". The best one so far has to come from @Daniel_Hossack who said to him “Your head's so far up your own arse, you can bake an upsidedown cake”

The tweets are now gone and the page for Chorley's timeline is showing a blank account.

Neither of the judges or hosts contributed to the excitement, and could not be reached for comment.



man 2016 has been An Experience



From: Richard Folsom
Sent: 23rd November 2016, 09:30
To: Cecelia Tyburn
Subject: Columnist contact details
Att: Columnist contact sheet v 3.xcl

Hi Ty, 

As requested, these are the names of all of the reporters we are currently in contact with and their respective newspaper columns that we might be able to use. 

Best Regards,
Richard Folsom
Assistant Manager of PR and Communications
Folly Productions



I thought this would go over after its 3-day news cycle run but apparently it's not going away.

It's been almost two weeks, newspapers are still trying to dig up dirt for some reason, so I'm breaking my silence.

1.Abigail won fair and square, i'm proud that she won because she deserved that.

Beverley were all crying about how Peter deserved a place in the final before all this.

2.5. He was everyone's heartthrob and now the press has turned on him in the blink of an eye

3.It's disgusting and disrespectful of to both Thomas and Molly to think that their integrity as judges have been somehow compromised

3.1.You all trusted the judges the day before the news broke - you trusted that they made the right judgements

3.2.You trusted that they were fair. You trusted in their skill. This hasn't changed.



Harold Postmartin
gate I Have been around longer than most. I have seen the world change a lot. When I was Thomas' age, they would both have been sent to gaol

Harold Postmartin
had this happened. But now we witness a different kind of persecution. Not from the courts but from the press. Daily Mail holding court over

Harold Postmartin
Peter's past is disgraceful to witness. I

Harold Postmartin
'd like to believe that we have changed towards the better as a society, but there are still people who maintain prejudices and deem fit to

Harold Postmartin
judge others by who they love or by their colour. It is shameful.

Nicky Minaj
well i wasn't expecting that

The Sun
Harold Postmartin: "Peter's past is disgraceful to witness."

BuzzFeed UK
15 reasons why this year's Bake Off contestants are the best



From: more efficient than an army [11:31]
I want to see the journalists at the Guardian, the Telegraph, the Mail and the Express go into a Battle Royale, and I want it to be televised.

From: Night Witch [12:05]
what are the stakes?

From: more efficient than an army [12:39]
Losers get sacrificed to the great media god during silly season. Winners gets to walk away.

From: Night Witch [13:00]
you joke about that, but someone at c4 or itv is bound to pick up that pilot if you talk to the right people



Radio 4
Thomas Nightingale opens up in an exclusive interview on Mel and Sue's Late Lunch Show

Augusta Coopertown
Thomas just said "I'm absolutely mad about him" abt Peter. oh my god...

Tista Gosh
this is the first interview he's given in YEARS where he talks about his personal life

James Lochrane
Well, on behalf of , I'd like to take back what we said about Nightingale being a robot

Daniel Hossack
We make fun of Nightingale being emotionally repressed a lot on but I also recognise that it's a media strategy as much as anything else

in the same way, peter has to be this cheerful,nerdy geek or else he gets dubbed as an angry black man stereotype.

William Skirmish
Someone's done a transcript of the interview for those who don't have access to it:




I've uploaded the entire clip on, because the whole thing is too big for tumblr. A few things you should know: 1) the commentary is fucking gold, esp regarding the public reaction to it. 2) The bit where he talks about the relationship starts at around 2:45-5:50. They veer off topic a bit, but I've transcripted the most important bits. 3) go give Mel and Sue the kudos the deserve on Twitter for doing the interview.

MEL GIEDROYC: Right! Enough natter from us, let's bring on our guest that everyone is tuning in for. Sue, would you like to do the introduction?

SUE PERKINS: Yes, before we begin let me just say that it does take, I think, a certain amount of bravery to put yourself out there after something like this, because everyone's initial reaction would be to just barricade yourself in your house for a few decades. So please welcome to the show, The Great British Bake Off judge Thomas Nightingale!

THOMAS NIGHTINGALE: Thank you. Thank you very much for having me on.

MEL: It's been quite a...quite a busy couple of days for you, hasn't it.

THOMAS: [awkward laughter] Yes, quite.


SUE: The thing is, with the public outcry being what they were, it did feel like that general public felt they were owed something - that knowing about your private relationship was something they were entitled to, as if you were deliberately hiding something heinous by not going public. I think that if you had come out - well, you already have, but if you had revealed your relationship to the public at your own will, there would have been a lot less fuss about the whole thing.

THOMAS: Oh, absolutely. Obviously it's too late for what-if's now, but I do think that it would probably have taken a different turn had we decided to do just that. Announcing the relationship is, is- well, I- it wasn't planned, exactly, but I had planned to talk to Peter about it eventually. I think I did know that it was an inevitability when we, er, we first started dating. You can brace yourself for the media reaction, if you know what's coming, if you have the strategic upper hand but because it came out the way it did... there was this air of something very sordid about it. Or rather, it was framed in such a way to make it seem more controversial than what it actually was. It's because the press decided to break the story, so it's like they had caught us doing something wrong, and suddenly we were supposed to pay for it.

SUE: And it's a very 'damned if you do, damned if you don't' situation, isn't it, because if you had revealed all, then there would be another group of people who would have said "Well there's no need for that! Don't flaunt it in our faces, no one cares." but if you don't— well, this happens.

THOMAS: Well, quite.

MEL: There is also another side that thinks this is a publicity stunt, isn't there? That because you are well-known for being a rather private person, and that photo, the photo that broke the story, it was very public show of affection. And people thought you were flaunting it, so you deserved to deal with the resulting chaos. And how do you— well, do you recon that it must have affected how everything played out?

THOMAS: Well, I— I can't really justify that, and I guess I've stopped trying. And it is a constant chore to say this, but we weren't doing anything wrong. The context behind that photo was simply that we, uh, we were coming back from dinner with Peter's parents. That was it.

SUE: And did it go well?

THOMAS: [sheepish laughter] It had gone fairly well, actually, and I was— well, for the entirety of the month that we started dating, I was a bit more reckless, and behaved a rather bit more spontaneously than what I— what I usually am. And I think that was a side that— that Peter brought out, because spending time in the public eye meant that a lot of things are planned beforehand, right down to the minute. And I recognised that it was out of character for me, reflecting back, and I would constantly ask myself 'oh, what the hell am I doing' but... Anyway, we were coming back from dinner with Peter's parents, and they were fairly accepting, and the awkwardness had mostly melted away by the end of the evening.

SUE: [gleefully] Were you given the shovel talk?

THOMAS: [laughs]... I— I— yes I was, yes. But it was just at that point at the end of the evening, and no one knew we were out there, and no one had recognised us on the tube or on the walk back, and I just thought— I wanted to make this work. And I kind of just— well I realised— in that moment that I was absolutely mad for him. And I just thought— well, what the hell. And that... that's all there was to it, really, that's the context. It was a- I won't say it was a regrettable moment, but it was a moment of carelessness, in hindsight.


SUE: Bake Off's obviously had scandals before, but this is something that's going to remain in people's memories. And there was a lot of talk about integrity and fairness at first as well, which very much felt like lip service, because that's obviously not what people were upset over. So right now there's a certain sort of toxicity attached to it as well, that is going to be very, very hard to erase. Do you think this it's going to change the perception of the show in future? Are you worried about how it's going to be remembered?

THOMAS: I suppose I am. I mean, I should be. I think we have achieved something incredible with the show over the past few years, and we've created something that is culturally phenomenal, so it does concern me that this might become the most memorable thing about Bake Off, in a few years time. And it's like you said, this isn't about integrity, or honesty, or fairness of the show, if it were about any of that, the Mail would not have gone digging into Peter's past. For this— this one specific thing to go down in infamy, for the show to be remembered for just this, is very diminishing. It's not fair to the show, or to the people behind it. The producers, the hosts, the contestants and— and our relationship, when it comes down to it, it should not be defined by what the press has suddenly deemed immoral.


MEL: What is with the rumour that you're breaking up? What is— because this sounds like a load of tabloid nonsense, but we should clear it up, just on record.

THOMAS: Right, well, we're spending some time apart. It's— it's really for personal reasons than anything else. I think, when the whole scandal started, I knew that the press would flock to me. Which is what I hoped, because I didn't want Peter to go through...well, the same kind of humiliation and media wringer that I did, back in 2002. I spent the early 2000's half in the public eye, and then going through a very mortifying break-up that made a lot out of nothing. And I thought, if I could find a way to protect Peter from it, I will. It's not the best of plans, but it was a plan and it's pretty much the only plan I do have.

Source: choux-hury      #1) the commentary is fucking SPOT ON   #2) he stammers whenever he talks about Peter. that's. that's alot.   #3) 'I was absolutely mad for him' god....slam an oven tray in my FACE   #media ethics

12,025 notes



Column: Our public consumption of the personal, and why it's an embarrassment
Guardian opinion > Television & Entertainment 
By Oberon Thames | 23rd November 2016

As the last week of coverage over Starlingate has shown, our relentless need for the private lives of public figures often take a vicious turn

It’s a strange thing, the public life of a Bake Off star; they occupy the space that is not public and not private, with the tabloids often running circles around themselves in attempt to denote their lives. During the show’s run, their status swing like a pendulum between the two; filming puts them in the limelight, it’s only during airing period they are put ostensibly in the public eye but by that time, several months after the competition has ended, many have already gone back to being private citizens. The tabloids play it safe and err on the side of caution; there is often the usual minor deluge about a saucy background or alleged professional training, but beyond that the gossip doesn't get much more exciting. Bake Off feeds us an image of wholesomeness and normality, a relatable narrative that week after week we tune back into for a dose of. Baking is only the narrative vehicle through which we consume our weekly episode of light-hearted, friendly competition of camaraderie and people peering fussily into ovens. 

But all the mysterioso and intrigue in the world can’t keep the curiosity and palate for melodrama sated when it comes to scandal. Peter Grant was, let’s face it, dragged into the limelight and out of the closet when news of his affair with Bake Off judge Thomas Nightingale broke. First it was saucy, then it was was scandalous, then after a while, it became tiring. Even the Telegraph's exhaustive, tireless coverage of it was beginning to grate. 

This is about Peter Grant and Thomas Nightingale, but it's also not just about them. With reality shows, as with celeb culture, we crave the private, the illicit and the personal, and we crave to consume that in such a hugely public way. There is constantly a demand for more material, a demand to know, a demand for access to everything and anything that goes on in the life of a public persona with so much entitlement.

Because we're bored, or curious, or just demand to be entertained, we put our subjects under microscopic scrutiny and thus the temptation to dig up dirt still overwhelms our demand for genuine positivity, no matter what context it's presented in. There seems to be an underlying need for bile fascination, for the so-bad-it's-good, as if finding the ugly underbelly of something makes it more realistic somehow. After all, it's why we have regular Bake Off related "scandals"; something has to keep the mix from being overly saccharine, and so in lieu of editing-room melodrama, we have hullabaloo about binned ice cream. 

But the way the public press has gone about Grant and Nightingale's reveal has been something else entirely. We saw a spark we could fan into a flame and stoked that until it became a giant forest fire. The way we have craved access to both Grant and Nightingale's personal lives has been an embarrassment; moreover, it is hugely dehumanising. Although I suppose it should be expected by now, since the complete lack of sympathy and understanding, the gleeful, callous way we peer into celebrity lives with wide eyes and disdain and noses pressed flat against the glass, has become part of our consumption habit. 

For Nightingale, the coverage has ranged from entitled to outright homophobic, where the attitude has been to demand that he gives up details of his personal life, or else he is being deceitful. The careful image of privacy that Nightingale has maintained over the years has been purposefully to counteract this. For Grant, the minute that he associated with Nightingale's fame, the media decided that he belonged to the public, that they had the right to his personhood. Because he is and nerdy and easy-going, and therefore projects a nonthreatening kind of image of a black man, the tabloids decided to write his narrative in a way he couldn't possibly control. The Daily Mail certainly believed that when they repeated said that his displays of kindness was "gimmicky" and "false". They could not parse the idea of someone black with working class background as being non-threatening. While Nightingale is accustomed to the public eye, Grant is not an industry professional. He is unaccustomed to the publicity, he was shoved into the spotlight and now people are exploiting that for readers and profit.

We demand intimacy, we demand that they make this very personal, very private matter an open book to us and we demand it as if we have a God-given right to it. It is such a selfish, embarrassing way to consume media and it is such a betrayal of the values that we profess to love about Bake Off.



Henry Pyke 
the guardian at it again with their typical sanctimonious crap, I see

Brandon Coopertown
Good read from



Eventually, the tide turned. Somewhere in the middle of the second week, on a memorable Radio 4 interview on Mel and Sue's Late Lunch Show, Nightingale divulged about his private life for the first time in a decade. There was a sudden outpouring of condolences and understanding, and just like that, the public opinion changed.

Perhaps it was a clever behind-the-scenes negotiation by some media chessmaster that got several columnists writing about the moral dissonance of public obsession at the same time. Perhaps at that point the news had run its course and had been milked for all it was worth, to the extent even the general public were getting weary. It would be an exaggeration and an overly simple, overly optimistic statement to say that it was because the narrative had turned in their favour - but it was true.

Their story had been humanised and personified; it was no longer a secretive, half-hidden affair, but had turned into a romantic comedy. And suddenly people found that they loved to root for a happy ending.






so the newspapers over here are still going haywire over this goddamn dumpster fire of a scandal, so let's all share some positivity about Peter and Thomas. Reblog this and put in the tags your favourite moment of theirs from GBBO

Source: gingham-gods    #I forgot which week it was but there was this part where Peter was rambling abt architecture #and Sahra Miriam and Molly were all just nodding along #but Thomas was like...really interested and was actually listening to it #and then came back and quizzed Peter on it later #that was sweet bc you know he'd obviously already fallen arse over elbows

5,599 notes




Column: overworked and overbaked, it's time we got over 'Starlingate'
Telegraph > Columns | TV & Entertainment | Culture
By William Skirmish, 24th November 2016

“How do I know if it's overdone?” is a question often-heard on Bake Off, but apparently, not something asked of the tabloids.

Depending on who you ask, The Great British Bake Off represents a myriad of different values, cultural phenomena and media ideals (remember: it's never really just a cake, no matter what Sahra Guleed's comforting voice tells you). If you believe the Daily Mail, this season has been an assault to all things British, a colonisation of Britain's viewers by "foreigners" and a gutting of our national identity by daring to have ethnic minorities onscreen showing their culinary talents. Ask the Guardian, and it's the reality show for smart people, for those too educated and too cultured and too classy to watch the petty melodrama and manufactured conflict of Big Brother or The Bachelor. Either way, Bake Off has secured a place in our contemporary media and cultural landscape - notoriously British, constantly stressful and phenomenally received, it's become a part of the world of watercoolers and panel discussions as much as Doctor Who or The X-Factor. Love it or hate it, it's selling factor is that it is a show based on camaraderie and mutual fondness and cooperation.

So it seems ironic, then, that the media coverage the last week has shown anything but. What started as a celebrity scandal has become a media bloodbath and spectator sport. The first couple of days following the exposure of the affair between judge Thomas Nightingale and contestant Peter Grant - what the fans have dubbed 'Starlingate', a play on their previously cutesy portmanteau "starlingale" - were a wild ride. The excitement, the questions, the brutal, methodical re-examination of the clips and the speculation of what lay on the editing room floor were all par for the course - but then tides turned. The writing on the wall was nigh and the tabloids were out for blood.

This had become less about integrity of the judging and more about crucifying Nightingale and Grant. We left behind questions of integrity the moment The Daily Mail published a long, elaborate exposure piece dissecting Nightingale's love life and his ten-year-dead relationship with star chef David Mellenby; we buried integrity in the dirt when, a day later, Grant's background was laid bare, falsified and criminalised. He flunked out of Hendon (no, he just decided to study architecture instead). He used to steal cars (there was no proof of that). His father has a history of drug abuse (that has literally nothing to do with anything). He's an immigrant who grew up on welfare (he's the son of an immigrant and yet he's still got more heart and empathy than the entire Mail staff).

In comparison, his profile was juxtaposed next to Nightingale's polished, upper-class shine with public school background and charmed upbringing. The Daily Mail, in a rarely-seen act of subtlety, let its own viewers work out the subtext of the sensational class conflict. In their typical lack of self-awareness, however, they failed to recognise that the narrative has the same lure of Kate and Will, but with an added, illicit side of gay scandal - one that would cause reactions of pearl-clutching and moral comeuppance, broaching its readers concerns for "family values" on the BBC.

The story, at this point, is becoming overworked, with underproofed accusation being flung right and left (see what I did there? Sorry Dominic Croft, if you're reading this). We've squeezed all the juicy, pulpy scandal we can from it and the narrative has run its course. The Daily Mail has called into question the qualification and judging of Abigail Kamara and has in turn gotten a thorough thrashing by Molly DuFae herself; last year's runner-up ran off at the mouth on Twitter, gotten attacked and deleted his account all within two days; BBC has released an official statement of neutrality in vague support; the Guardian has published a thinkpiece.

Nothing more can be said about this that hasn't already been said by pundits, or tweeters, or panel shows, or columnists. It is time that we, as a nation, moved on.



From: A. Seawoll [16:59]
You got the Telegraph and the Guardian to agree with each other. That is bloody magic


From: The Tyburn [17:01]
Not magic, Alexander. Just money, brute force and excel sheets.


From: A. Seawoll [17:12]
No idea what that means, or what it's referring to. Not going to ask.



From: [Unknown Number]

Dear Martin,
Power is power.



From: Sahra [21:00]
Peter wants to talk to N f2f, arrange rendezvous?

From: Miriam [21:13]
I'm home with the missus, you can gather at abdul's, i think N has a summer house out here. I'll send you the address.

From: Sahra [21:21]
lmao ofc he does










*blows a kiss into my oven* for peter grant

*pours and entire bottle of vodka into my oven* for peter grant
*stuffs blankets into my oven* for peter grant*

Source: choux-hury    #someone please help the poor boy

1,082 notes


From: Hurricane C [09:24]
Are you still with Peter? I haven't been able to get ahold of neither him nor Thomas the entire afternoon. He's due to appear on Loose Women at 12

From: Herculass Mulligan [09:30]
we're in surrey @abdul's, peter is at thomas's summer house. i think they're having emotional reunion sex rn

From: Hurricane C [09:45]

From: Herculass Mulligan [10:01]
but the good news is, n has stopped being an idiot & they've made up, no need to keep them apart. tbh i think he just wants to make sure that peter is ok.






Daily Mirror
Thomas Nightingale: relationship stronger than ever

Daily Express
Peter and Thomas reunite, dismiss claims of break up

Daily Mail Online
Peter Grant and Thomas Nightingale back together

The Sun
still no end in sight






Column: We must not let “starlingate” become Bake Off's only legacy
Guardian Opinion > Television & Entertainment
By Cherie Mensier | 25th November, 2016

The tabloids and red tops are finally winding down, but one of the biggest stakes remain: the future reputation of Bake Off is still in the air. 

After seven years on our screen, we are by now expectant of the fact that every year, like clockwork, The Great British Bake Off produces a piece of juicy gossip or controversy that has the nation talking. From Bingate to betting scandals, from accusations of favouritism to shattered porcelain, seeing the internet alight with discussion has become just much of a staple experience of Bake Off as the innuendo. It's a fun cultural ritual to balance out the sweetness of the show, but never has it has such an impact as the current one.

Whenever a controversy hits, it is easy to forget what it was that made Bake Off so good in the first place. The warmth, the camaraderie, the music and the commentary become all but sideshows as we focus on the scandal, and this year we've had one that's been made out to be more scandalous than most. For the best part of two weeks, we have followed the drama of "Starlingate" play out, a grotesque circus that consisted of humiliation, accusation, stalking and moral indignation. Sure, there was unexpected warmth as the contestants circled the wagons and banded together behind Grant, but at that point it had become a show of schadenfreudistic entertainment.

The relationship between Thomas Nightingale and Peter Grant became a cringingly public affair when the story broke over ten days ago and it's become the only thing anyone's talked about when they talk about Bake Off. But what's worrisome is that it's going to become all they talk about in the future. In a radio interview with Radio 4 on Tuesday, Nightingale made an important point: the future reputation of the show shouldn't be tanished by what the tabloids had decided to hang, draw and quarter that week

The Daily Mail compared it to the Angus Deayton scandal, in a rather blatant and tasteless attempt to tarnish it with their moral pearl-clutching - but while Have I Got News for You recovered from that, I doubt that Bake Off would benefit from having rotating guest judges. Nightingale has not been sacked from the BBC, and the show has not been cancelled, so it does seem excessively pessimistic that we're worried about it now - but the show has suffered a significant remodelling of its image, and not one that happened with its permission.

When Bake Off first started in 2010, it was to lukewarm reviews and much public ridicule. It looked like the BBC was out of ideas - they'd dusted off a half-famous chef from 2000's and brought in two no-name comedians to host. David Carey had done a couple of rounds on panel shows, Miriam Stephanopolous was a small-time stand-up comic, Thomas Nightingale had been away from the limelight for the best part of a decade. The only figure of interest was Molly Dufae, the queen of small treats, whose judging was 80% conveyed through her facial expression rather than her words. It got off to a shaky start, but it bucked the trend of the mainstream reality shows and cooking contests of the time, so it was given a second chance. Today, it has a thriving audience of above 13 million, two BAFTAs, a six-figure budget and its format has seen a dozen exports to a dozen countries. Sahra Guleed took over in 2013, following Carey's departure and she was celebrated as the BBC finally allowing more diversity into their shows. Either that, or it has finally fallen to the PC military police. Whatever makes the Daily Mail sell more papers.

But the point is, Bake Off became the nation's treasure because we made it so - because the we believed in its quirky formula and charming simplicity, and it won us over. And just as easily we can turn it into the show where the judge and the finalist went of a tumble in the hay, giving it a reputation of being nothing more than being the context of a over-sensationalised affair.

Bake Off is one of our nation's most treasured shows, and it deserves to be treated with more dignity than this.



From: Cecelia Tyburn
Sent: 13th December, 2016 09:02
To: Abram Thames
Subject: Thursday lunch

Dear Abram,

Do you have time to do lunch on Thursday? I'm going to be in your part of town, I was hoping we could catch up a bit. It has been such a long time.

Best Regards,
Cecilia Tyburn,
Head of Public Relations and Communications
Folly Productions



From: Abram Thames
Sent: 16th December, 2016 15:06
To: Cecelia Tyburn
Subject: Re: Thursday lunch

Dear Cecelia

I will run the article, but if I ever do end up ringing you up for that favour, I hope that it'll be nothing less than because I accidentally slept with Piers Morgan or something equally horrendous.

Abram Thames,
Editor in Chief
Telegraph Weekend



From: Cecelia Tyburn
Sent: 20th December, 2016, 14:40
To: Alexander Seawoll
Subject: Follow-up media strategy

Dear Alex,

I've set up an interview for a celebrity profile piece with the Telegraph Weekend, scheduled in July to be published in September. Hopefully, it'll cast a more human perspective on them. The issue will be out right about the time Sports Relief filming starts, it should be able to assess public perception on having Peter as host sometime in the future.

Best Regards
Cecelia Tyburn
Head of Public Relations and Communications
Folly Productions




Grant jokes that in the Hollywood adaptation of this story, he would like to see Nightingale be played by Colin Firth, Hugh Grant or Jason Isaacs. In the role of Grant, I tell him that I imagine a young up-and-coming actor like John Boyega or Alfred Enoch, which he heartily approves of.

The media gave it the air of a grandiose epic with the setup of a romantic comedy, the social elements of a Jane Austen novel, all with the allure of star-crossed lovers overcoming external forces ripping them apart. It was illicit; it was titillating; it was sweeping love story that conquered odds and proved itself (again, sorry) to be a force above all others.

In reality, it was a muted, simple affair between two people who realised they got on quite well and liked each other - if acting perhaps a little too soon, falling a little too hard - and getting caught at the wrong time, in the wrong place. Nightingale purses his lips at the memory of it, an ironic mirror of his expression when faced with a badly-baked crust, but Grant laughs at the extravagance that was made. He still remains astonished by how big a deal came about of it all, how the story rose like an over-proofed dough. “We went from scandal to debate topic to nation's power couple.”

After several public appearances, a lot of damage control and several morally superior newspaper columns, the tides finally turned. Everyone loved to root for a happy ending and in the end, like awaking from a bout of mass-hallucination, everyone seemed to realise that it was just a baking show.

In January they'd made their first red carpet appearance together, at British Independent Film Awards where Nightingale was asked to present. Nightingale appeared on the red carpet in another fine three-piece suit (“also known as his Friday usual”, says Grant cheekily) and Grant in a stunning purple-tinted tux. The internet had taken to the couple by storm by that point; a few months later they were nominated for Entertainment Weekly's power couple, voted "New Couple of the Year" by the Backlot and voted top 10 in Buzzfeed Top Internet Ships This Year.

They seemed happy together, and at the point in their relationship that had passed the honeymoon period and into a steady comfort. The media circus and the extensive press coverage had put strains on Grant's job at his architecture firm and their new relationship seemed like a leaky ship in a storm, damaged before it could even set sail. And yet, despite all that, a steely stiff-upper lip and sheer stubbornness helped them pull through. When I ask about the present, however, Grant grins and finally opens up again, in the only way he can.

He recalls an ironic twist of fate on the first day of shooting, when Nightingale drove up the tent in a vintage '76 Jaguar Mark II.

“I saw it approach from the tent said 'I'd marry him for that car.' I was with Dominic (Croft) and Zach (Palmer) at that time, and I wasn't really thinking what I was saying. I'd completely forgotten about it but they must have remembered. Then, when the news broke, Dom texted me to say 'stage one of car heist accomplished?' and it became an in-joke between the lot of us. They still don't let me live that down.”



From: Fleet Thames
Sent: 13th February 2017
To: Alexander Seawoll
Subject: Pre-production meeting question

Hi Alexander, 

Since pre-production prep is already underway and you neglected to mention this at the meeting: how on earth are we going to do the class of 2016 reunion episode for the next series?


Best Regards
Fleet Thames
Head of Editing
Folly Productions

Chapter Text


Grant's life has changed immensely since being catapulted into the limelight, but he is still making sure to keep a positive attitude. After leaving his original job, he now works as a field researcher on Grand Designs. He is enthusiastic about the new line of work, he says, even if it does involve a lot of travel.

Nightingale has continued with Bake Off and has just finished filming the semi-final of eighth series. Sometimes Grant drops by the tent if he's on his way back from research trips. “Don't want the new batch getting any ideas in there,” he jokes.

In truth, Grant's presence is a comforting and welcome addition - apparently, Nightingale is more distracted when Grant is around and less likely to stalk the tent looking for mistakes. (“Absolutely untrue,” he says. “I'd never betray my reputation like that, I just leave the surveillance to Molly.”) While he's not allowed to help, Grant says that he does give silent encouragement to this year's bakers behind the cameras before he gets shooed away by the crew.

It does seem like a small miracle that their relationship has survived intact. They received support from family and friends before the public would even consider it, and relented in their faith in each other. The producers of Bake Off rolled with it, and the executives at the BBC came down in their favour.

Since last November, the two of them have moved in together into Nightingale's house in Russel Square.

It has all the staples of a happy ending, although they both say they wouldn't call it that. For them, the journey's only just started.



Bake Off Class of 2016 - where are they now?

By Tista Gosh

We're only a few days away from the final of the 2017 Great British Bake Off. We've bid farewell to nine bakers and talked to the remaining three - in the meantime, let's catch up with the previous year's batch. The Class of 2016 special will be airing on October 3rd on BBC Two, so here's a teaser for what's to come:

Peter Grant - When we last saw Peter, he was in the middle of a media furore after it was revealed that he was dating Thomas Nightingale. That's finally settled down - he's got a cookbook coming out soon, and it's going to be all about experimenting with baking and cooking methods, which he was famous for. After leaving his work in an architecture company, he now works as a researcher and senior consultant for Grand Designs.

Lesley May - Since her semi-final in Bake Off, Lesley has started working on a cookbook and a food column. She has started a food blog and is now hosting a weekly food section on her local television morning show in Essex.

Beverley Brook - Beverley still works with environmental protection, but has moved to London and works with Thames Water. She is the spokesperson and media liaison for Greater London Wildlife and Water Conversation and Protection society and has starred in several PSAs and advertisements.

Abigail Kamara - Abigail won Bake Off with flying colours, but has stayed out of the public eye. Despite initial talks of a TV series in the works and a spot as a food writer, Abigail has returned to journalism. She finished her degree this July and is now working as a investigative reporter, with several articles soon to be published in the Guardian, the Atlantic and the New York Times. She just came back from a six-month project in New York.

Jaget Kumar - Jaget's skills as an urban explorer has lead him to a job within the filmmaking industry after he was booked for a catering event. He is now the production liaison for London Underground, also working as location scout and location guide for indie studios.

Melissa Oswald - Melissa writes for Bee Craft magazine and has monthly recipes in Country Living with tips for using honey and alternative sweeteners in food. She has also bought five more beehives and has started a small business selling her honey. In fact, Dominic Croft is one of her most loyal customers.

Dominic Croft - Dominic's had dreams of opening an organic café and bakery long before Bake Off, and he's finally achieved it. The Croft Café is located on the high street in Herefordshire. His husband Victor's farm provides a steady supply of fresh goods, and he uses Melissa's honey for sweetener in almost all his bakes. The café has become a local favourite and specialises in remakes of fictional foods.

Sky Gardens - Sky is a full-time baker in a patisserie close to her home and bakes for charities on weekends. Her cakes are always best-sellers and she is in charge of decorating and window arrangements.

Harold Postmartin - Harold has released a recipe book that celebrates the more classical British foods and the history behind them. He has said that he found the limelight too taxing on his age and health, so he's gone back to his passion - teaching history. He now teaches weekly baking classes and holds a series of lectures called the Short History of British Food at the local college, often to fully-seated classes.

Kimberley Reynolds - Kimberley returned to the US for a short time last year and has worked in production and as food researcher on various American baking shows. Inspired by Bake Off's historical segments, she is now in talks to host an upcoming PBS documentary series about the diversity and history of American foods. 

Simone Fitzwilliam - Simone still works at the Café de Paris, but has been promoted to sous-pastry chef and works part-time to help local restaurants with their dessert menus.

Zachary Palmer - Zachary works as assistant manager in his organic food shop in Brightlingsea and is in charge of the desserts deli in the café. He also bakes for charities and is often booked for community events.

The finale of the Great British Bake Off will be airing at 8 o'clock on Wednesday 4th October on BBC One.

Back to



Kimberley Reynolds
there is an SNL sketch out that tries to parody Bake Off and I think it came from the depths of hell, but if i had to watch it so do you all

Kimberley Reynolds
still recovering from the fact that Nightingale has a fucking Scouse accent. either it's deliberate, or something's gone really wrong

James Gallagher
The joke is literally that one of the bakers is screwing the judge. that's the humour. it's been 1yr, it wasn't funny, and we're over this

Robert Su
From the bottom of our hearts, I am sorry. So sorry.



From baking star to investigative reporter: Abigail Kamara's rise to fame

Sadie Wentroub
20th January 2018
The Times

In October 2016, Abigail Kamara became the youngest contestant ever to win The Great British Bake Off - almost two year later, that's the least she's accomplished. 

When I meet Abigail Kamara in her small fourth-floor studio in Balham, the first thing I notice is the Bake Off trophy on her bookshelf. It's tucked away next to a two heaving shelves of books on the history of journalism, from memoirs to biographies to books on press and copyright laws.

She just came back from New York last week, where she spent several months on an investigative piece on the use of human labour in organic farming. She worked with APR journalist Lia Haddock and interviewed several union heads as her job as a part-time researcher for comedian John Oliver's show Last Week Tonight.

After winning Bake Off, Kamara quickly landed a book deal and a food column, with a TV show that was in the talks. She was a popular panelist on Have I Got News for You before moving onto to be the youngest guest host later. Even The One Show had eyes on her hosting a new food section. And yet despite all this, Kamara decided to stay on course with her original plan to become a journalist. After graduating University College London, she went from food writer to investigative reporting, taken under the wing of PR manager Cecelia Tyburn and senior journalist Geoffrey Wheatcroft. Her first major piece, published in the Guardian, was a joint article on the irregular and unstable work schedule of Starbucks employees, and how the company's timekeeping software was making their lives a logistical nightmare. Since then, Kamara had also gone on to write freelance and work as researcher for American news comedy shows.

It was a twist of fate that landed her in the position. She pointedly does not call it a stroke of luck, but an unfortunate set of circumstances that took away her exposure to the limelight, giving her chance to work on school and truly consider her options. The “Starlingate” scandal that broke just a few weeks after she won Bake Off diverted attention from her fame - something that would eventually come down in her favour.

“I don't want to say it was blessing, because it wasn't,” Kamara says. “It was awful and it was just blatant hypocrisy from the press. It was awful for Peter, it was awful for Thomas - it was really a low point of journalism, I think, to have the press obsess over something so innocuous. I burnt some bridges after I ranted about it on Twitter, but I still stand by what I said.”

Kamara and Grant had become close friends during Bake Off, and Kamara regards him as an older brother - she says that she's still protective of him, in a way. In fact, it was the media reaction to the scandal that lead her to keep pursuing her career, because she sought to change it. Her view on the traditional press has balanced out since then, but Kamara still stands by the points she made: that there's a reason people are trusting comedians and alternative news sources over newspapers.

Traditional journalism has become a gruelling industry to work in in the digital age, with many major print newspapers either struggling with financial upkeep, being bought out or just shutting down. The issue of press freedom and bias, and being able to write stories free from corporate and financial influence, has long been an overhanging concern. Kamara is one of the youngest, most promising reporters today, and she entered an industry that seems to simultaneously detest, misunderstand and at the same time try to appeal to her generation. There is no shortage of woes on how the younger readers are flocking to social networks or Buzzfeed to get their news, but also large concern on the part of the younger readers on the subject of media bias and sensationalism. The industry as it traditionally stands seems to think of itself to be on the brink of fainting, often clashing with the growing tech giants' and their style of reporting, while trying to maintain a separation between press and technology.

Kamara says that she was inspired to pursue her career after reading the investigative works on the News of the World phone hacking and the MP expenses scandals. In the UK, her fame has been both a blessing a curse on her career, as it helps her get high-profile interviews, but doesn't help her get taken seriously. Her work in America has been more productive, but her age, race and gender can be just as much of a hindrance across the pond. She's scored interviews with several FBI contacts (courtesy of fellow baker Kimberley Reynolds, Kamara tells me, who used to work for the bureau) along with senators and congressmen, but says that her skills still need honing. As a journalist, her questioning technique is scrutinising but brunt, sometimes reminiscent of the old-school detectives. She is focused on every word and every facial expression, puts her whole attention on her subject, but admits that she is too impatient at times, brazen at others.

Kamara is still developing a reporting style, and her speciality seems to be in the food industry, where she makes use of her resources and contacts from her post-Bake Off high. From work ethics to means of production to the politics of food, Kamara says her goal is to expose and shed light on overlooked and underrepresented issues.

So far she's interviewed inmates, judges, lawyers, policemen and politicians, has written a dozen articles, worked for three different publications and worked in four different countries - all under two years. Her ambition is limitless, as is her enthusiasm and curiosity, and she is only getting started.




Sahra Guleed
has finally relented to the 21st century and joined twitter - remember this day, folks, because it is historical.

Robert Su
Got 's cookbook today! looks exciting, can't wait to try it - and of course the experiments look awesome

Emma Wall
I think I saw Peter Grant from Bake Off in Tesco today. chrissssssst he's so gorgeous...

Phillip Orante
i know you're not on Twitter much anymore, but your cookbook is amazing!

Susan Thomas
Been re-watching gbbo 16 with mum. and wow....Peter's arms look even better this time around

Joanne Marstowe
i've been making things from Peter's cookbook with my daughter and it's so much fun! it's absolutely genius, thank you for it.

Jake Phillips
's cookbook is making science really enjoyable, and it's really invaluable to me as a dad & teacher

If I'm honest, I think Peter from Bake Off raised the bar for boyfriends everywhere

William Skirmish
there's a rerun of GBBO '16 on Dave and our new dog really loves Peter!

Betsy Tankridge
Peter Grant has a smile that looks like it could power an entire city for 5 days

BuzzFeed UK
25 nice tweets about Peter Grant that Thomas Nightingale approves of



from: Bevs [15:32]
You two have really become That Couple on social media haven't you?

from: Peter [16:01]

From: Bevs [16:10}
Check your bf's twitter


From: Peter Grant [17:30]
so listen.

From: Peter Grant [17:34]
what are the chances that your govt has a time machine stashed away in a basement somewhere

From: K. Reynolds [17:40]
If we do, it's probably under Tyburn's control by now. Go talk to her about your bf's twitter thing.

From: Peter Grant [18:29]
yeah so i just talked to Ty and she's delighted with it all, thinks its better publicity than she could ever arrange. which means we need to team up with Kumar for a heist. 



Home >> TV
Flights of Fancy: two years later, Thomas Nightingale and Peter Grant are still as charming as ever
By Sabrina Severn
22nd September 2018

They came into the public eye as Britain's most controversial couple - now they're the nation's sweethearts. We catch up with the Bake Off judge and former contestant.

Today is the first day of filming for this year's Great Comic Relief Bake Off and Peter Grant is this episode's guest host, something that has been highly anticipated since it was announced. Thomas Nightingale and Molly DuFae watch the bakers from their corner of the tent, and the celebrity contestants are currently scurrying to finish the last 20 minutes of their signature bake under the judges' scrutiny. Just like in his contestant days, however, Grant is still determined to help, and he rushes around the benches giving advice and providing comfort. Right now he's parked by the workbench of radio DJ Zoe Lacey, holding her cake steady as she tries to move it from baking tray to cooling rack.

“I get the shakes whenever Nightingale passes by!” says Lacey to Grant in a conspiratory whisper. “He keeps giving me this disapproving look, like I'm doing something really, obviously wrong and I don't even know it. I don't know how you cope with it.”

“To be honest with you, I haven't made anything in two years,” Grant quips back, as she collapses into the counter in laughter.

The other three bakers are actor Charles Macklin, jazz musician Michael Adjayi and broadcaster Maureen Duffy. They are all keeping on time but Lacey has had to start over and describes her bake as a “tragedy made with caster sugar and butter”. Grant is technically not allowed to provide more help than necessary, but that doesn't stop him from trying.

With ten minutes left, Nightingale makes his rounds again and looks at Lacey decorating her bake with sceptical frown - the ganache has split and the créme patisserie looks too runny - and it makes her drop her fondant decorations in distress. Grant comes over from the front of the tent and leans suavely across the workbench to block Lacey from view. “Keep going, I'm distracting him,” he hisses over his shoulder at her, sending her into another fit of giggles.

The onscreen chemistry between Nightingale and Grant is still as electric to watch as ever, a playful mix of old married couple and comedy double act. Grant looks comfortable to be back in the tent and in front of the camera again, and his sense humour is comforting. He whispers well-experienced advice to the stressed out celebrities, despite Nightingale giving him disapproving looks from afar. “You're not supposed to be this helpful,” he says. 

It's now a distant memory that they used to be Britain's most controversial couple. Four weeks after the 2016 series of The Great British Bake Off ended, the media exploded in furore that judge Thomas Nightingale and contestant Peter Grant were spotted kissing in Soho, to the shock of the nation.

Since then, the public opinion has changed and the production team embraced the relationship instead of burying it. The Class of 2016 special episode approached it with self-deprecating humour and friendly teasing, but made very little fuss - as hosts Sahra Guleed and Miriam Stephanoplous said, “You've probably heard enough about it already.” They came out ahead of Will and Kate in a recent poll held by Buzzfeed, despite not making half as many public appearances. Grant says that he is still not wholly comfortable talking about his private life, although Nightingale has been more open.

“I'm still really awkward when it comes to revealing anything too emotional, so I let Thomas do the talking,” Grant says with a shrug. “It's not a big deal, we don't fight over it, but I just tend to, I dunno, get it wrong. He has the media experience, he always knows what to say, and I'm just blanking whenever someone asks me something private on camera.”

Being on camera on Bake Off and being on camera for an interview are not the same thing, Grant explains. Revealing something personal to the public requires finesse and strategy, something that he trusts Nightingale with without hesitation, but Grant himself would stumble over words, say the wrong things or get distracted and go off on a tangent.

After lunch, it's time for the technical. The challenge is ciabatta bread and not something Grant has experience in making, so the only thing he can do for the bakers is leave them to it. He looks rather dejected as he says, “This is Thomas' turf. He's always brilliant at it, so I don't even know if any of them are doing it wrong. It's frustrating, because I really want to help them, but I literally don't know if they're making mistakes...because I don't what a mistake looks like.”

He does his best to give soothing encouragements, tries to guess the right consistency and pokes at the dough to check that it's proofed enough. After the judging, Grant gives Zoe Lacey and Maureen Duffy big hugs and pep-talks a downtrodden Michael Adjayi, who walks away a bit less disappointed afterwards. It is comforting to know that Grant is the still the sweetheart of tent, even as host.

In front of the camera, Grant and Nightingale maintain a strictly professional relationship, still acutely aware of the moral outrage that would happen otherwise. The director and producers initially asked for “flirty banter”, but after one hour and several they re-takes decided to scrap it, on the account that it sounded too forced. After all, the charm of the show has always come from the natural long-lasting friendship between Nightingale and DuFae. 

“Thomas usually gets the most attention in the tent. The cameras just love the grey steel," says DuFae. “Although it does look like Peter's will be stealing your fans today.”

Without missing a beat, Nightingale replies “Means they've got good taste, Molly". Grant buries his face in arms as the bakers erupt into laughter and cheers.

Grant was let go from him job shortly after the news broke, but his career has only excelled since. He's worked as consultant for a number of BBC and Channel 4 architecture documentaries, and eventually landing a permanent job on Grand Designs as head researcher and community liaison. Rumour has it that he's primed to take over as host next series.

Nightingale has continued to host Bake Off, now in its ninth series, although he has made more appearances on panel shows and talk shows. The sudden exposure has, if anything, humanised him. We've seen him blush, make jokes and talk about Grant with unabashed admiration - the previous persona of a stoic, steely and closed-off Thomas Nightingale is gone, replaced by someone with more warmth and humour - and vulnerability. Starting with the famous Radio 4 interview on Mel and Sue's Late Lunch Show, the public perception of Nightingale's image has seen a 180-degree change. 

“For years, I worked with the image the public already had, so I was used to it, by then, to be closed off and protective of my private life.” It was a persona that was made with the purpose of self-preservation, when Bake Off was in its early stages and still testing the waters, and he stuck with it out of habit. Now, with the public demanding more of his private life than ever, it seems more important than ever to maintain it - but he has relented, saying that he'd rather have control over what goes out. In the tent, he is still as stern and unforgiving as ever to underproofed dough or overmixed cakes, but he is far less derided for it. Before, he came off as standoffish and pretentious - “Now, he's Mr Darcy,” Grant laughs. Nightingale seems displeased with that nickname, but his co-host DuFae revels in teasing him.

As for Grant, his nickname of “The Starling” that Sahra Guleed gave him on the show has stuck, even if he thinks that it's hardly relevant any more. “I think some people just really like making bird puns.”

The Great Comic Relief Bake Off will be airing from March 21st to 25th 2019, and will feature Beverley Brook, Ed Byrne and Sue Perkins as additional guest hosts. 

Back to Good Housekeeping



Thomas Nightingale
Peter & I have had an eventful,spectacular 2yrs together. Today marks the end of one period and the beginning of something new.

Thomas Nightingale
Sorry, didn't mean to keep everyone in suspense: Readers, I married him 


Peter Grant
We got the band back together: 








every time Peter talks about architecture, you can see Sahra, Miriam and Molly's eyes glaze over while Nightingale plans their wedding in his head. I mean his eyes are def also glazing over, but he's gonna have a beautiful venue for the reception

well i'll be fucking damned.

Source: soggy--bottoms #I LITERALLY #CANNOT #BELIEVE

32,091 notes