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Bake Off's Andrew Smyth 'overwhelmed' by support from Northern Ireland fans

By Jonny Bell

Vanquished Great British Bake Off finalist Andrew Smyth thanked his Northern Ireland fans for their "overwhelming" support and says he can't wait to get back to Belfast to see them.

The 25-year-old from Holywood was pipped to the title in Wednesday night's show by PE teacher Candice Brown.

Despite his granny's chocolate cake impressing Paul Hollywood, it was a soggy bottom on his tart that hit his hopes.

While his meringue crown "lacked definition," Andrew said he was delighted with the 3D effect although conceded he may have been "too ambitious".

More: Bake Off serves up champion crown for Candice Brown and crumbs of comfort for Andrew Smyth

Speaking to BBC Good Morning Ulster on Thursday morning, Andrew described his time on the show as a "fabulous experience".

The Rolls Royce jet engineer, who now lives in Derby, said he had been overwhelmed with the support he had from his Northern Ireland fans.

"They were just saying how great it was to see a Northern Irishman on mainstream TV," he said.

On his pastry, he said it was just the wrong type of glaze, "but that's how things go".

More: Bake Off's Andrew to whip Belfast fans into a frenzy at book signing

Andrew said he struggled to keep the outcome of the pre-recorded final a secret and his 10-week long absence from work.

He said he was keen to bring his engineering skills into the tent and hoped to forge a career in television in scientific or engineering programming.

More: Andrew Smyth hoping for TV success after The Great British Bake Off

"But that's in the long term," he added, "for now I am just looking forward to enjoying all the perks that come with the Bake Off.

"The shows, the demos and the fans, I can't wait to see them, they have been so supportive."

Despite his loss he said he was "genuinely delighted" for Candice saying she and the other contestants had become good friends.

He described judging duo Paul Holywood and Mary Berry as perfect for the show.

"Paul is ruthlessly direct, while Mary tries to find all the positives," he said.

And on its move to Channel Four, Andrew said he was looking forward to seeing the "new chapter" in the show's history.

"It's not the end of Bake Off, it's just taking a new direction.

"For me it was a great experience and Candice thoroughly deserved the win. Through the weeks she had been the more consistent and she deserved it."

Andrew will be in Belfast's Fountain Street Waterstones this Saturday, October 29 to sign copies of The Great British Bake Off: Perfect Cakes & Bakes to Make at Home book.

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