Great British Bake Off to get 2 festival specials

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 18 May 2017
Paul Hollywood

Paul Hollywood

Channel 4 have confirmed they will screen two hour-long festival specials of 'Great British Bake Off' later this year

The 'Great British Bake Off' is set to get two festive specials later this.

The popular baking show will return to screens at the end of 2017 with a revamped format, a brand new presenting duo and a different judge following its shift to Channel 4, but fans are in for an extra treat as bosses have confirmed there will be two hour-long episodes gracing the television planner around the Christmas period this year.

However, TV site Broadcast, which broke the news of the specials, said it is not yet known whether the shows will feature celebrity contestants or the general public.

It was announced last year that Channel 4 had swiped the rights to the cooking series from the BBC - which had screened the show since 2010 - after bosses at the broadcaster whacked down an impressive sum in return for a three-year contract.

Shortly after the news was let out of the bag, presenters Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins decided to turn their backs on the show in order to explore other ventures.

Baking legend Mary Berry - who has judged on the programme since its very first episode - later announced she was quitting the series out of "loyalty" to the BBC.

However, not everyone took the same approach as Channel 4 managed to persuade Paul Hollywood to remain on the programme as a judge for another three years.

Bosses were then faced with the challenge of finding a pair of new hosts and a new judge to work alongside the silver fox, but it didn't take long before they confirmed Prue Leith as Paul's co-star and Noel Fielding and Sandi Toksvig as the presenters.

Not much is known about the series but bosses have confirmed the episodes will run for 75 minutes - instead of an hour - due to the ad breaks on Channel 4.

A spokesperson for the show said: "We have always promised viewers that they would not be short-changed on the show, even though we are an ad-funded channel. The programme will run for 75 minutes to allow that."

Not only have producers made a conscious effort to keep the running time the same as the BBC but they've also decided to keep some of the show's main elements.

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