Prue Leith was worried about Paul Hollywood on GBBO

Prue Leith has admitted she reached out to her close friend Mary Berry before she accepted the 'Great British Bake off' deal because she wanted to know what her co-judge Paul Hollywood was "really like."

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Prue Leith

Prue Leith

Prue Leith wanted to know what Paul Hollywood was "really like" before she accepted the judging role on the new series of the 'Great British Bake Off'.

The 77-year-old restaurateur has just accepted an impressive £500,000 offer to front the cooking show alongside the silver fox when it moves across to Channel 4 later this year but she has admitted she didn't snatch the cash straight away and actually rang her close friend Mary Berry - who quit the programme last year - to find out what the 51-year-old chef was like to work with on screen.

Speaking to The Sun newspaper, she said: "When Mary said she wasn't going with it, I'll confess I thought, 'I'd quite like that job'.

"So I rang her up before I took the job to find out about Paul. I was very anxious to know. She said he was lovely, so that was OK."

And, although she's pleased with her pay, Prue has claimed the money wasn't a factor in her decision because she doesn't have to work for cash anymore.

She explained: "No, it's interesting, I didn't think about the money at all. That probably sounds quite arrogant but I am lucky enough to choose what I do. I don't have to do it for the money. I heard that I was going to earn three times as much as Mary. That would be nice but I don't know what Mary earned."

Meanwhile, Paul seems relatively happy with his new co-judge - even though she reminds him of his mother-in-law - and can't wait to start shooting the new series.

He said recently: "Prue, obviously she's got this huge professional background and I've got nothing but respect for her, I'm really looking forward to it.

"We've met and had a chat, there's something there, she reminds me of my mother-in-law in a fantastic way, and I think we'll get on great."

Last week, Noel Fielding and Sandi Toksvig were announced as the new hosts of the show and Paul - who was kept in the dark about their appointment - is "really excited" about the line-up for the series.

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