Belfast Telegraph

Paul Hollywood missed Mary Berry while filming Bake Off without her

Paul Hollywood has defended his decision to move to Channel 4 with The Great British Bake Off.

Paul Hollywood missed Mary Berry when he started filming the new series of The Great British Bake Off without her.

The pair acted as co-judges on the BBC baking show, but when Channel 4 won a bidding war over rights to the programme, Paul was the only one out of the original line-up to go with the series.

Mary and presenters Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins stayed with the BBC, while Prue Leith was drafted in to replace Mary and Sandi Toksvig and Noel Fielding took on presenting duties for Channel 4.

But shooting without his on-screen family took some getting used to for Paul, who told Closer magazine, "I have missed Mary, Mel and Sue, and when I started filming the new Bake Off it was hard."

However, Paul noted his struggle was eased slightly thanks to the hilarity of new duo Sandi and Noel.

"I had tears rolling down my face because of how funny Noel and Sandi are, so I wasn't really that sad in the end," he smiled.

Paul divided opinion when he made the decision to go with Bake Off to Channel 4, with many labelling him a traitor for bidding farewell to the network that arguably made his name.

But the silver fox insisted he had to put himself first.

"It has been hard because I was called a traitor over my decision to leave the BBC to go to Channel 4... The other three left for whatever reason but I didn't want to lose my job. The show found me and I didn't want to turn my back on them," he explained.

Channel 4 has yet to set a premiere date for the new Bake Off, but it is expected to air some time this autumn (17).

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