The Great British Bake Off 'bans older contestants' due to coronavirus fears

The Great British Bake Off will apparently ban its more senior contestants from taking part in the new series due to coronavirus fears.

Bosses are reportedly lining up a younger batch of contestants for this year’s instalment of the baking staple, over fears that older competitors are more susceptible to the virus and may cause production to halt.

According to The Sun, there is a real sense of ‘urgency’ to put plans in place for the filming of the new series, which was due to start later this summer.

A source told the publication that older contestants were considered too ‘high-risk’ to take part.

Bake Off is known for featuring a range of age with their bakers, with nation’s sweetheart Val and Diane Beard, who famously caused outrage due to ‘Baked Alasksa Gate’ in 2014, among the iconic older contestants.

Judge Prue Leith previously revealed that bosses are trying to push ahead with the show ‘as soon as they can,’ given the pandemic.

‘I really hope so, everybody’s hoping so, but we’re all waiting for Boris to tell us what we’re allowed to do and what we’re not allowed to do,’ she told Andrew Marr.

‘It’s impossible at the moment because there are really a lot of people on set, but I’m sure they’ll find a way as soon as they can.’

Asked if she would want to be part of the show this year, Prue added: ‘Absolutely, I’d be very upset if somebody kicked me off. Last year I did Junior Bake Off and senior Bake Off. Whether or not I’d be able to do both this time I just don’t think there’s enough time in the year.’

This year’s new series will be the first to feature comedian Matt Lucas, who will be replacing outgoing presenter Sandi Toksvig, after she announced her departure earlier this year.

Metro.co.uk has contacted Channel 4 for comment.

The Great British Bake Off airs on Channel 4.

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