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All the profiles of the new Great British Bake Off stars


Meet the three newest recruits to the Bake Off tent.

Television chef Prue Leith has been confirmed as the new judge for The Great British Bake Off, and Sandi Toksvig and Noel Fielding will step into the presenting roles.

We take a look at the three new stars’ careers so far.

Prue Leith

Prue Leith first started as a cook at a firm of solicitors but has gone on to become one of Britain’s best loved restaurateurs and food writers.

After training at Le Cordon Bleu cookery school in London she worked as a caterer before opening her restaurant Leith’s in west London in 1969.

In 1974 she founded her own cookery school, Leith’s School of Food and Wine, which trains professional chefs and amateur cooks.

Famous alumni of the school include Lorraine Pascale, Gizzi Erskine and Matt Tebbutt, as well as Michelin-star chefs including Joe Mercer Nairne and Matt Christmas.

The South African-born cook, 77, has written many cookbooks, most famously Leith’s Cookery Bible, which was penned as a textbook for her school and is frequently updated.

She sold the school in the early 1990s before setting up a college in South Africa and has carved out a career as a cooking columnist and novelist, as well as a television personality.

Prue judged the BBC cookery show The Great British Menu for 11 years before stepping down at the end of last year, shortly after her old friend Mary Berry announced she would not follow the Great British Bake Off to Channel 4.

Prue is a former chair of the Children’s Food Trust, which campaigns to encourage the nation’s children to eat more healthily, and was awarded an OBE in 1989 and a CBE in the 2010 Birthday Honours.

Sandi Toksvig

Comedian and writer Sandi Toksvig began her career on the stage at Cambridge University’s Footlights theatre group, where she was a student at the same time as Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie, Tony Slattery and Emma Thompson, and wrote the society’s first-ever all-female show.

After graduating, Sandi started out in children’s television and performed on the stand-up circuit before moving into panel shows including Call My Bluff, Whose Line Is It Anyway?, Mock the Week, QI and Have I Got News for You.

Sandi is also well-known for her radio work, featuring on BBC Radio 4′s I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue, The Unbelievable Truth, and as the chair of The News Quiz, which she left in 2015 to co-found the Women’s Equality Party.

She has written for theatre and television, is the author of more than 20 fiction and non-fiction books for children and adults, and writes regular columns for Good Housekeeping, the Sunday Telegraph and The Lady.

Sandi, 58, has hosted Channel 4 game show Fifteen To One since 2014 and took over from Stephen Fry as the host of BBC panel show QI in 2016.

Noel Fielding

Comedian and actor Noel Fielding, 43, is best known for his break-out television series The Mighty Boosh, which he co-wrote with Julian Barratt.

In the surreal BBC sitcom, Noel played lead character Vince Noir as well as a number of other roles for three series between 2004 and 2007.

The Mighty Boosh also featured as a BBC radio series in 2001 and has toured as a live show.

Noel’s other TV work includes his E4 sketch show Noel Fielding’s Luxury Comedy, and appearances in Channel 4 comedies Nathan Barley, The IT Crowd, and Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace.

He made various appearances as a panellist on BBC music game show Never Mind The Buzzcocks and became a team captain in 2009 before the programme ended its 18-year run in 2015.

Noel is also part of comedy music partnership Loose Tapestries with Kasabian’s Sergio Pizzorno, which was set up to create music for Noel Fielding’s Luxury Comedy.

PA Media