Bake Off to move iconic cooking tent after two years of strict Covid rules

The Great British Bake Off is moving its iconic tent to a new location for this summer’s series – ending the strict ‘Covid bubble’ of the past two years.

The Channel 4 hit has been filmed at the Down Hall Hotel in Essex since 2020, with judges, presenters and contestants having to live, some for more than six weeks.

This year, however, the hotel’s 98 rooms and 110 acres of parkland are available for reservations all summer, suggesting the show has moved on.

Last night a spokeswoman for the show said: ‘We will not be filming in a bubble this year, but protocols will be in place to keep everyone safe.

A source explained: “The whole team, especially Prue [Leith]found it very difficult not to be able to return home every week.

The Great British Bake Off team will reunite at a new location later this year

“They’re thrilled that this year it’s going back to how it used to be, when they were shooting on weekends and could go on weekdays.”

Last year, host Noel Fielding was joined by his partner DJ Lliana Bird and judge Paul Hollywood by his girlfriend Melissa Spalding.

Fellow judge Prue said: “I remember saying, ‘Oh my God, I’m going to go into a bubble with three men, none of them adults. But actually it was lovely. One of the things that was a huge relief was how Matt [Lucas] and I went up.

One option for 2022 is for the show to return to the former long-term home, Welford Park, Berks.