Mary Berry – aka our beloved golden berry – may have quit Bake Off, but the 81 year old isn’t planning to fade away quietly into retirement.
The queen of baking has already revealed her plans to join James Martin for a special Christmas show later this year. Now, even more excitingly, she has confirmed that she’s set to front a brand-new show for the BBC.
Are you ready for Mary Berry’s Secrets from Britain’s Great Houses?
While the title makes it sound as if there won’t be any baking involved whatsoever (nightmare), this couldn’t be any further from the truth.
In fact, while there'll be a focus on the stunning gardens, kitchens and private rooms of the UK’s most beloved stately homes, the octogenarian will explore them “through the prism of what she’s best known for – food.”
Inspired by her visits, she will be whipping up her own unique recipes, crafted to celebrate the heritage and legacy of these beautiful properties – and all of which will, undoubtedly, be worthy of Star Baker in the GBBO Showstopper Challenge.
Speaking about her new project in a statement, Berry said she was "so excited" to be doing the new six-part series with the BBC.
"I have always had an enquiring mind so I know I will be inspired by the great houses we visit," she said.
BBC director of content Charlotte Moore added: "This series will be a real treat for BBC One viewers to go behind the scenes with Mary Berry and explore Britain's great houses through her love of cooking."
Meanwhile Tanya Shaw, managing director at Shine TV, which is producing Berry's new series, said: “I can't think of anyone more perfect to tell the stories of these great households and to bring us such a unique insight into Britain's rich culinary past.”
The show will be made up of six 30-minute long episodes, and is set to air later this year.
Earlier this year, Berry announced that she was quitting the Great British Bake Off when it moved to its new home on Channel 4 – and that her decision had been made out of loyalty to the BBC.
“My decision to stay with the BBC is out of loyalty to them, as they have nurtured me, and the show, that was a unique and brilliant format from day one,” the 81-year-old said in a statement.
“What a privilege and honour it has been to be part of seven years of magic in a tent.
“I am just sad for the audience who may not be ready for change, I hope they understand my decision.”
Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins – aka Mel and Sue – also quit the show, insisting that they would not “follow the dough” to a rival channel.
Paul Hollywood, however, has signed a three-year contract with Channel 4, rumoured to be worth £1 million.
Insisting his decision had nothing to do with the money involved, he later said that the show “been a huge part of my life in the past few years and I just couldn’t turn my back on all that – the bakers themselves, the bakes, the team that makes it, and of course the tent, the bunting, and who could forget… the squirrels”.
Images: Rex Pictures, Love Productions