Meet Maggie, GBBO's 70-year-old contestant from Dorset
- Credit: Mark Bourdillon/Love Productions
On your marks, get set, bake! The most daunting tent in the world is about to welcome 12 amateur bakers to pit their showstoppers and technical bakes against each other as The Great British Bake Off returns to Channel 4. Flour will fly and tempers will be tested as they attempt to impress judges - the ‘Doyen of Dough’ Paul Hollywood (who will get the coveted double hand-shake or will it be a double elbow bump?), and the ‘Colourful Queen of the Bake Off Scene’ Prue Leith, assisted by the dynamic duo Noel Fielding and Matt Lucas.
Filmed earlier this year, with all concerned in the production part of a Bake Off bubble, Hollywood has already hinted that this is going to be an exceptional series, declaring that the standard of baking was ’the highest I’ve ever encountered’.
The 2021 line-up features a diverse range of backgrounds, experience and ages including a 56-year-old police detective in the Met, a 19-year-old vegan psychology student, a German-born trombone playing physicist and - flying the flag for Dorset – Maggie, a retired nurse and midwife from Poole, who at 70 is this year’s oldest baker.
Rumour has it that Maggie can whip up a divine Dorset apple cake and even bake a Dorset knob, two county classics that could make an appearance on this award-winning national television show. How will Noel and Matt react when confronted with a Dorset knob?!
Meet Maggie from Poole
Maggie, who has lived most of her life Dorset, grew up surrounded by family who constantly cooked and baked - so baking is something that comes naturally. She has an impressive collection of classic recipe books and loves recreating traditional bakes, lockdown gave her plenty of time to indulge in this, while at the same time experimenting with exciting flavours. Her favourite thing to bake is bread – so she will be the one to watch in Bread Week!
Maggie believes the years of experience she has gained delivering babies was good preparation for taking part in Bake Off - working under pressure should be a breeze. She is also very fit – she loves canoeing, kayaking and sailing in Poole Harbour (a passion inherited from her father), and regularly takes off for road trips in her campervan (I hope she shares some campervan bakes).
- 1 Essex firework displays: The best events for Bonfire Night 2021
- 2 12 best Devon Christmas markets for 2021
- 3 10 of the best Halloween events in Cheshire
- 4 10 spooky Halloween events in Sussex
- 5 5 pumpkin patches to visit in Sussex this autumn
- 6 Magical Christmas markets in Suffolk 2021
- 7 10 great Halloween events in Lancashire
- 8 20 of the best places to eat out in St Ives
- 9 Fireworks displays and bonfire night events in Sussex 2021
- 10 20 of the best restaurants in Hertfordshire
When she’s not baking or thrill-seeking, Maggie enjoys spending time with her great nieces and great nephews. And, no great surprise when you have a natural born baker in the family, she has a regular stream of requests for birthday cakes and Christmas cakes.
When asked what showstopper would best express her, she said ‘a modern sculpture of a woman holding a baby’ - whether this would be in cake, bread or pie form is unclear.
As Maggie is very proud to live in Dorset, and loves exploring its coast and countryside, I’m already imagining some Jurassic Coast inspired showstoppers - West Bay’s golden rippling cliffs in bread form, or an iced fruit cake representation of Old Harry Rocks topped with chalky white frosting. Or perhaps she will be inspired to create the Cerne Abbas Giant in gingerbread?
Whatever she creates and bakes, we'll be cheering Maggie on!
The Great British Bake Off starts on Tuesday September 21 at 8pm