Great British Bake Off - a look back at Yorkshire's own past winners and contestants

Excitement is mounting for the new series of the Great British Bake Off before it hits screens in a week.

Tuesday, 20th August 2019, 6:00 pm
Bake off winner and celebrity chef Nadiya Hussain. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.
Bake off winner and celebrity chef Nadiya Hussain. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.

Four of the 13 contestants are from Yorkshire, it has been revealed, but past series have also seen people from the region compete in the tent - and three of them go on to win.

Series 4

Sheffield council worker Howard Middleton appeared on the fourth series after the show after three seasons without a Yorkshire presence.

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Fans will remember him for being involved in the ‘Custardgate' incident.

He reappeared on the 2016 Christmas special, and these days works with Bake With a Legend, where he teaches baking classes around the country, including at corporate events, commercial promotions and private parties.

Howard continues to entertain audiences as a public speaker, compere and broadcaster.

Series 5

Bake off winner and celebrity chef Nadiya Hussain. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.

Hull-born Nancy Birtwhistle was picked for series four after a failed application the year before - and was the first Yorkshire name to win the competition.

The retired former GP surgery manager's first recollection of baking and cooking was alongside her grandmother.

After the series, she said: "It was the most difficult thing I have ever undertaken in my life, but equally the most enjoyable."

Series 6

Howard Middleton, from Sheffield. Picture by Gary Longbottom.

Nadiya Hussain - the winner of series six and the most famous contestant linked to the region - lived in Leeds when she signed up for the show.

Since being named champion, the 34-year-old moved to Milton Keynes to pursue a culinary career and has since gone on to front successful cookery and lifestyle shows such as The Chronicles of Nadiya, Nadiya's British Food Adventure, Nadiya’s Family Favourites and this year's Time to Eat.

She was also commissioned by Buckingham Palace to bake the Queen's cake as part of her 90th birthday celebrations, and chose to make an orange drizzle cake with orange curd and orange buttercream.

Sandy Docherty. Picture by James Hardisty.

The series also featured Sandy Docherty, from Yeadon in Leeds, who has since spent her days working in school safeguarding, touring food events and has also released her own book.

Series 9

There was another two-series drought for Yorkshire folk in the tent, but four people from the region were included in the ninth installment.

Rotherham's Rahul Mandal won the series - the second aired on Channel 4 after the move from the BBC.

The technically-minded contestant impressed audiences with his "edible landscape", and Dr Mandal has since worked as an engineering researcher at the University of Sheffield's Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre.

Born in India, Rahul came to the UK in 2010 on a scholarship to study for his PhD in Optical Metrology at Loughborough University.

Rahul Mandal at the Sheffield Christmas lights switch-on. Picture by Andrew Roe.

Audiences also took to mental health specialist and show finalist Kim-Joy Hewlett's artistic baking.

The popular contestant lives in Barwick in Elmet near Leeds, has spoken out about mental health issues and her new book, Baking with Kim-Joy, comes out on Thursday.

She was born in Belgium to an English father and Malaysian-Chinese mother, grew up in London, studied in Bristol and later moved to the West Yorkshire city.

Wakefield woman Karen Wright, a sampling assistant, cited the 15 years she spent living in France with her husband as sparking her love of baking.

She has appeared at the city's Rhubarb Festival and now has a show on the online 5 Towns Radio station.

Luke Thompson, from Sheffield, started making Victoria sponges, fruit cobblers and chocolate cake as a child.

The civil servant also worked as a techno DJ.

Bake Off returns to Channel 4 on Tuesday August 27 at 8pm.

Kim-Joy pictured at her home at Barwick in Elmet near Leeds. Picture by Gary Longbottom.
Series nine contestant Karen Wright at Wakefield Rhubarb Festival.