Prue Leith Says She Feels ‘Grateful’ For Fame Compared To Bake Off Co-Star Paul Hollywood

"These are the people who pay my wages. It’s really flattering."
Prue Leith
Prue Leith
Simone Padovani/Awakening via Getty Images

Prue Leith has admitted she and Paul Hollywood have very different feelings towards the celebrity status they have as a result of being judges on the Great British Bake Off.

The pair have judged Bake Off together since 2017, when Prue took over from Mary Berry after the show’s move to Channel 4.

In the past few weeks, Paul has made headlines on several occasions after speaking out about the pitfalls of being in the public eye, claiming being a celebrity had turned him into a “hermit” and admitting he’d think twice about signing up for Bake Off knowing everything that comes with it.

Speaking about her fellow judge’s feelings, Prue told the PA news agency: “He’s always very good-tempered, if we’re somewhere and somebody comes up and wants us to do a selfie, he’ll say ‘oh all right then,’ but he doesn’t like it. He would much prefer to be somewhere nobody will see him.

“Whereas I think I’m quite grateful for it, these are the people who pay my wages.”

Prue and Paul in the Bake Off tent
Prue and Paul in the Bake Off tent
C4/Love Productions/Mark Bourdillon via PA Media

“It’s really flattering,” she continued. “People are very nice.

“You know I’d hate to be a politician and have that kind of fame. Then at least half the country will hate you, whatever your policy is, whatever you do, half the people won’t like you, whereas everybody likes food! It’s not something that makes natural enemies.

“I mean, I’m sure some people are irritated by me or don’t like me, for some reason or another, but it won’t be serious. They’re not going to be beastly about it. It’s very rare that I’m attacked or trolled.”

In a candid interview last month, Paul shared that he’d been moved to tears by the abuse that came his way when he stuck with Bake Off after its move to Channel 4.

The current Bake Off presenting and judging line-up
The current Bake Off presenting and judging line-up
via PA Features Archive/Press Association Images

“I was called every name under the sun,” he recalled of that period. “It was so horrendous, I actually cried. No one wants to be painted as the pantomime villain, especially when I was just sticking with a job I loved. But you can’t kick against it.

“David Walliams actually took me aside and said, ‘Mate, it’s just a game. Enjoy it.’ You’re clickbait, basically. But it hurt me. After a while, though, I got tough. I just thought, ‘OK, I’ll be your bad guy’.”

The Great British Bake Off will return for its thirteenth series later this year.

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