“I need to bake my flipping socks off,” said Frances… and so she did with a delicious blend of style and substance. But fans of The Great British Bake Off were tweeting more than their socks off on the night of the Final, which registered a whopping peak of 9 million viewers on BBC2, launched 156,000 tweets and amassed over 68,000 ‘Likes’ on Facebook for one post announcing the winner!
“When Frances was announced as the winner we cheered so loudly we frightened our dog… oops,” wrote Susan Littlefair-Smith on the official Facebook fan page, before adding that she “gave the dog an extra treat and he’s recovered now”. Phew.
“She’s so dedicated, excitable and humble – pleased she won,” beamed Samantha Mullins. “I was rooting for Frances, mainly because I had her in the sweepstake at work, however all three of them are fantastic!” confessed Nic Peglar.
“Congratulations to Frances and to Kimberley and Ruby too,” said Diane Harris. “In fact congratulations to all those who took part in this series. I know I couldn’t do it, so I salute you all!”
“Loved Kimberly all the way through but Frances’ showstopper wedding cake was the only one that didn’t look a mess! A worthy winner!” exclaimed Lydia Jones, echoing the views of many that this was a very tight contest. Or “more open than Sarah-Jayne’s Beef Wellington in GBBO2012,” as @RosieSmart1 described it.
The tension emitting from the tent was palpable on the social networks, with many well-known figures airing their views:
“I’m so nervous I can’t watch!” tweeted last year’s Bake Off champ John Whaites.
“Just watched the final of GBBO. Got a bit weepy at the end. Hungry, too,” sobbed Sophie Ellis Bextor.
“Great British Bake off! Surprise result but a charming one!” tweeted Jonathan Ross.
“Wooooaaaahhhhhh Frances!!! Bake Off overcomes all doubters – as always,” proclaimed Chris Evans.
As for Paddy Considine, his attention was attracted by something other than the baking battle: “I swear I just saw a camera move from Evil Dead on the Great British Bake-Off…”
Elsewhere, the cheeky pinching of Frances’ asparagus by Mary, Mel and Sue turned the tent into CSI: Bake Off. Perhaps the curious case of #Custardgate needs to be reopened?
“This was a totally priceless moment!” laughed Helen Murray. “I can imagine this sort of thing happens a lot in the tent!” @DJDunnings added: “It’s like Grand Theft Bake-Off!”
Paul Hollywood’s technical challenge of pretzels (Codename: PretzHell) sent many viewers scurrying behind the sofas to watch, with the process responsible for a tougher twist than The Crying Game and the biggest identity crisis since Norman Bates. “NONE of them look like pretzels to me,” observed @madamding, while @FinanceJames remarked: “Pretzels, harder than you’d think…”
But out of the 13,000 who applied, Frances managed to nab the victory with her Showstopper despite Kimberley and Ruby pushing her to the limit. Given the tears of joy and sadness along the way, from bakers and viewers alike, it’s fair to say that this year’s series has been very emotional. After a good rest for our tear ducts and taste buds, we can’t wait to see what tasty treats lie in store when Series 5 rolls onto BBC One in 2014…
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