Sandi Toksvig to depart Great British Bake Off

The telly favourite is departing the famous Bake Off tent after three years.

“When stepping down from a job it is quite common for people to say they are doing so in order to spend more time with their family. Unusually I am departing from the Great British Bake Off so I can spend more time with my other work.  As my waistline will testify, Bake Off is an all-consuming show.” – Sandi Toksvig

After three years and 51 showstoppers Sandi has announced plans to switch off her kitchen timer and leave the Bake Off tent, Channel 4 today announced.

Sandi is leaving the show to focus on other work projects, which include hosting the forthcoming Channel 4 series The Write Offs, which looks at the issue of adult literacy. She is also host of QI for BBC Two, Fifteen To One for Channel 4 and hosts a number of radio programmes for the BBC.

The hunt is currently on for a new face to join Noel Fielding, Paul Hollywood and Prue Lee in the tent. Candidates must have experience of mopping up spills and the occasional tear, making tea and keeping the amateur bakers to time.

“Spending time with Prue, Paul and Noel has been one of the great pleasures of my life.  These are friendships which I know will continue beyond the confines of television.  Bake Off is a wonderful programme which has already proved it can happily withstand a change of hosting personnel.   The reason for that, of course, is that the true stars of the show are the bakers themselves.  I wish everyone well.” – Sandi Toksvig

“Sandi is a huge part of why Bake Off’s move to Channel 4 has been such a success and we are immensely grateful for her contribution to the show. We will miss her warmth and wit, not to mention her endless willingness to be the butt of jokes about being the least tall person in the Bake Off tent. Fortunately, her unique voice will continue to have an important presence on the Channel with new shows in development – none of which involve cake.” – Ian Katz, Director of Programmes at Channel 4

Sandi Toksvig had six years schooling at Mamaroneck High School, New York, at Cambridge she was awarded the Theresa Montefiore Memorial Award for outstanding academic achievement. She went on to appear in a variety of Footlights shows and was the director, writer and performer of the first all female Cambridge Revue.

Sandi and Noel succeeded Mel and Sue as the hosts of Bake Off in 2016 when Channel 4 outbid the BBC for the rights to the programme. Sandi’s other television credits include Saturday morning children’s magazine show from TVS No 73, BBC TV programmes including Behind the Headlines, The Big One with Mike McShane, Have I Got News for You, Island Race with John McCarthy and Call My Bluff. She was also one of the original members of the Comedy Store Players which saw her become a regular personality on Channel 4’s Whose Line is it Anyway?.

Sandi also appears on many BBC Radio 4 programmes including as host of travel programme Excess Baggage and chair of The News Quiz. In 2007, she was voted Broadcaster of the Year by the Broadcast Press Guild and Channel 4 Political Humorist of the Year. Her other achievements include writing 18 books as well as columns for a newspaper and a magazine.

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