Matt Lucas quits as Great British Bake Off host with Noel Fielding: here’s why and when GBBO 2023 will start

Matt Lucas bids a warm farewell to the Great British Bake Off as he announces he is handing the ‘baguette’ to someone else

Matt Lucas has bid “farewell” to the Great British Bake Off tent with news that he will no longer host the Channel 4 show. The 48-year-old said that after a “delicious experience” he will be “passing the baguette to someone else”.

Lucas said in a statement posted on Twitter that he came to the decision after trying to balance multiple project commitments like Sky Max comedy show Fantasy Football League.

“Xxx Farewell Bake Off! It’s been a delicious experience and I can’t imagine a more fun way of spending my summers, but it’s become clear to me that I can’t present both Fantasy Football League and Bake Off alongside all my other projects. So, after three series and 51 episodes, I am cheerfully passing the baguette to someone else,” he said

He added: "I would like to give my warmest thanks and gratitude to everyone at Love Productions and Channel 4 and to Noelipops [co-presenter Noel Fielding], Paul [Hollywood], Dame Prue [Leith], the crew and, of course, the wonderful bakers for welcoming me into the tent. I wish whoever takes over all the very best and I can’t wait to tune into the next series without already knowing who won!"

Channel 4 has not announced a replacement host, however, the 2023 series of the show is not set to start filming until April next year.

Matt Lucas’ co-host Noel Fielding said: "I will miss your big smile and your sense of fun and silliness. I will miss our writing days in that ridiculous room with the high ceilings and I will miss us giggling like naughty schoolboys when Paul says ‘eggy’ in his Scouse accent. You were so lovely to work with and so kind to the bakers. Have fun on your next adventure."

The show’s judges both wished Lucas well after the announcement. Paul Hollywood wished Lucas luck, while fellow judge Dame Prue thanked Lucas for "bringing so much laughter and fun to the tent".

The Bake Off’s twitter account released a response to Lucas’ statement with no hard feelings saying: “we’ve loved having Matt Lucas brighten up our Tent for the last three years, especially when laughter and smiles were so much in need. We appreciate everything he’s done for Bake Off, from working in covid bubbles to supporting the bakers. It’s been a pleasure - thanks Matt.”

The Great British Bake Off hosts Noel Fielding and Matt Lucas during Halloween Week.

Love Productions, the production company behind Bake Off, said it was thankful to Lucas for his work on the show, including during Covid, "which required a great sacrifice and an enormous dollop of humour. We consider Matt to be very much part of the Bake Off family and are extremely grateful for his part, along with Noel, in looking after very many bakers," the show’s producers added.

Ian Katz, chief content officer at Channel 4, echoed that sentiment, saying Lucas "brought warmth, wit and a large helping of endearing silliness to the tent and produced some of the most memorable moments of recent series".

When will the Great British Bake Off 2023 start?

No official air date has been announced for season 14 of the Great British Bake Off but entries are now open for keen bakers. You can apply via the Great British Bake Off website.

Group Photo of bakers, presenters and judges from Great British Bake Off 2022 (L to R (back) Maisam, Syabira, Abdul, William, James, Sandro, Maxy, Kevin, Janusz, Dawn, Carole, Rebs (front) Noel Fielding, Prue Leith, Paul Hollywood, Matt Lucas)

However, the application does reveal when the show will be filming, it says: “you must be able to commit to all the filming days required for the Programme, which are currently expected to be up to 21 days over a 10 week period April and August 2023.” This means it’s safe to assume that the next season will follow a similar timeline to this year’s competition, and will likely launch in autumn of 2023.

Who won the Great British Bake Off 2022?

At the end of the 2022 series the judges announced that Syabira, 32, from London, was this year’s winner. This wasn’t a surprise to many as Syabira has been a strong contender from the first week, and picked up the star baker title multiple times across the series.

Syabira spoke about her win and said: "Thank you so much. I can’t believe it. Honestly, it hasn’t sunk in yet, this is the biggest achievement in my life. All the hard work, all the trial and error, it has all been worth it. I am very very proud."

Paul congratulated the cardiovascular research associate and said: "Well done Syabira. She can be a bit of a risk taker with her flavours and it has worked. Some of the flavours we have never had in the tent before and [are] unlikely to have again, she is an incredible baker."

Syabira Yusoff with her showstopper (Photo: PA)

Prue added: "She is creative and she is careful, she practises like anything and she is imaginative, she just has the lot. She is a very skilful baker.”

Sandro who was up against Syabira in the final said: "I am so proud of Syabira. She is the Queen of Flavours; she fully deserves it. I am so happy for her. I am happy that I have got this far, and I am blessed, I am grateful. It’s been an amazing experience, it’s been a dream."