We’re halfway through Series 11 of Bake Off and it gets harder each week to see a baker leave. In Pastry Week, it was Linda’s turn to say pud-bye.
We sat down with Linda for a quick chat about her time in the tent:
‘Pastry Week was supposed to be my week! I can’t really be sad, as I have been like a child at Disneyland really. It’s been amazing, one of the highlights of my life. I am so proud of myself.’
‘Looking back, I thought I would be going home [in] the first week. I had stars in my eyes to be actually in the tent. The best bit was walking into the tent for the first time; it was quite magical. I was like a child in Santa’s grotto, eyes everywhere. I had to pinch myself so many times!
‘The relationships that developed between the bakers were very special to me and I hope those friendships will continue and we stay in touch. Bake Off has changed my life in many ways, and it has awakened my interest in the science of baking and the desire to understand and experiment more with flavours and techniques.
‘I am not sure what is next for me in the baking world, but I feel like I am a simmering pot at the moment and excited that this could be the start of a new chapter in my life. I have such a passion for growing my own produce and having outside space to connect with nature. It’s where I really feel at peace and I’m as passionate about self-help and the power of our own minds. I would love to get involved in a community allotment/farm project. I also love going fishing – it’s my happy place, being outside. We have a lovely life and Richie, my partner, is so chilled and laidback, we are very happy.
‘I am quite a positive personality, even though we all sometimes have our low moments, but I am a half-glass-full person. I hope that bakers of a similar age to me will apply for the next series and have the confidence to do it. I know you slow down as you get older but that shouldn’t put you off from taking on new projects. You have to make good choices and take any opportunity – so step out of your comfort zone and go for it, you can only try your best. And that’s what I feel I did in Bake Off, without a doubt. I didn’t ever feel it was a competition it was more about taking part, meeting new people, facing new challenges and at my age feeling great that I could do it. I didn’t go in it for fame or to change my life, it was more about achievement and enjoyment for me.
‘I so love it that people are enjoying the series and it makes them laugh, we need that at the moment. To have been part of a unique series for Bake Off has been one of the best experiences of my life.‘
Linda will join Jo Brand and Tom Allen on The Great British Bake Off: An Extra Slice on Friday 23rd October at 8pm on Channel 4.