Bake Off’s Prue Leith responds to Sandy Toksvig’s boredom claim

Star of the Great British Bake Off Dame Prue Leith has responded to former host Sandy Toksvig’s claim about leaving the Channel 4 show due to boredom.

In an interview with Radio Times last month, Toksvig revealed that she decided to quit the show in 2020 after three years as she "stopped having fun". She also said that she felt her brain was "atrophying" while "watching meringues dry".

The comedian hosted alongside Noel Fielding on the popular series from 2017 to 2020.

Speaking to Times Radio on Tuesday, Bake Off judge Leith responded by saying that she did not think Toksvig was really bored, adding: “I don’t think Sandi was so bored because she and I shared a wonderful green room in this posh house, which was where we filmed Bake Off and which was in the library.

"And so we had this wonderful selection of books and she would knit little figures and dress them beautifully. Did you know she’s a knitter? She sells [them] for charity.

"So she made lots of those. She wrote a few scripts. She did a lot of other things. I mean, I can see that for some people as clever as Sandi, watching meringue dry is perhaps a bit heavy, but I think she just liked the joke. I don’t think she was really bored."

Toksvig and Leith joined Bake Off in 2017 (PA)
Toksvig and Leith joined Bake Off in 2017 (PA)

Leith also joined the show at the same time as Toksvig in 2017 and to this day, she “absolutely” loves it, she said.

"I do still absolutely love it," she told the outlet.

"I don’t want to stay so long that I fall over; I just don’t want to make a fool of myself. And I don’t want to be there beyond when I’m really enjoying it and the public like me."

During her interview with Radio Times in January, Toksvig, who hosts BBC’s QI, said she was already growing tired of the show before her departure.

She said: “So after three years, I thought, ‘That’ll do, go and do something else!’.

“I’m in love enough with the business to think, ‘OK, that’s a nice pay cheque, but it doesn’t work for me. I’ll move on and do something else’.”

In the same interview, the 65-year-old presenter also revealed that she hasn’t been in touch with the Bake Off team since she left, and doesn’t watch the show.

“I don’t like cake,” she admitted. “But if somebody makes The Great British Cheese Off, I’m in.”

Bake Off concluded its 14th season in November 2023, with Matty Edgell from Cambridgeshire, taking the crown after presenting a tiered celebration cake.