"Farewell soggy bottoms" - Mary Berry bids the 'Great British Bake Off' goodbye

The 81-year-old judge has announced she will not move with the show when it goes to Channel 4, but Paul Hollywood will...

GBBO

Mary Berry and GBBO-winner Nadiya Hussain during the BAFTA TV Awards 2016 [Ian West / PA Wire/Press Association Images]

Fresh from the anguish of the biggest separation in pop culture history, what with Mel & Sue having said they won’t jump ship to Channel 4, more stiff peaks and stiff-upper-lipped misery as Mary Berry has also announced she will leave the Great British Bake Off when the current run comes to an end.

The 81-year-old judge, whose career was entirely revitalised by the popular competitive baking show, released a statement saying: “What a privilege and honour it has been to be part of seven years of magic in a tent – The Great British Bake Off. The Bake Off family – Paul, Mel and Sue – have given me so much joy and laughter.

“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.

“I’m just sad for the audience who may not be ready for change, I hope they understand my decision. I wish the programme, crew and future bakers every possible success and I am so very sad not to be a part of it.

“Farewell to soggy bottoms.”

The final member of the show’s roster, Paul Hollywood, is expected to move with the production team when the show debuts on Channel 4 in 2018, The Guardian claims.

The 50-year-old Liverpudlian was spotted arriving at the Channel 4 offices for what has been described as a “secret meeting,” despite it being widely reported in the British tabloid press. Hollywood apparently turned up in a car with blacked-out windows and was chaperoned out of the building’s rear exit.

Charlotte Moore, the BBC’s director of content, praised Mary Berry’s decision, which comes after more than a week of speculation over what she would do.

“Mary is an extraordinary woman, loved and adored by the British public, and the BBC is her natural home,” Moore said.

“I’ve been very lucky to have had the pleasure of working with Mary over the last seven years and I’m so pleased that relationship will continue.

“She is an inspiration to generation, a real icon and I can’t wait to cook up more unmissable shows with her in the future.”

Update: The Radio Times has reported that Paul Hollywood has signed a deal with Channel 4 and will still be a judge on the next iteration of the Great British Bake Off.

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