On Saturday 6 April, some of our members had a busy day visiting the Cake and Bake Show in Manchester before hot-footing it back to the seven hills for our second SHWI photo shoot for our 2014 calendar. The Cake and Bake Show is one massive event over three days with talks, masterclasses and workshops from some of the biggest names in the baking industry, as well as featuring a whole host of companies giving demonstrations and samples of their baking goods and wares.
SHWI members Laura Bainbridge, Anna Pilson, Di Coupe, Jen Marsden and myself booked some half-price tickets, unsure what to expect. Would we get sufficient samples? Could we meet any Great British Bake Off contestants? Would we get Laura get a cuddle of a Fabulous Baker Brother?
The answer was yes. On entering the venue, we paid £5 for the Cake and Bake Show goody bag with an event programme, free copy of the Telegraph, vouchers, Green and Black’s White Cooking Chocolate and some Silver Spoon cake decorations. Most stalls had some good tasters, from chunks of focaccia to dip in balsamic vinegar to homemade fudge. Stalls like the Lakeland section sold all the essentials (and more) for the potential baker and companies like Dr Oetker handed out even more goodie bags. Other stalls had some very interesting cake toppers (naked baby iced figure, anyone?).
But some of us had our eyes on the celebs. The name at the show who drew the biggest crowds was Eric Lanlard but I confess that I’m not that aware of his programme or previous books. We’d missed Mr Paul Hollywood who had been there in person on the Friday but there was still plenty of GBBO contestants to spot. I’d spied Ruth Clemens (series one) entering the VIP area, Holly Bell (series two) handing out leaflets for Sainsbury’s and Laura and Di spotted series one winner Edd Kimber. One of the most popular events of the day was the Bake Off featuring previous GBBO contestants. We were there on the front row (well, sat on the floor in front of the front row) to watch John Waite (series three winner) and Natasha (series three) team up with a volunteer from the audience to make tweels. I was first with my hand up and a question for John, asking him what he’s been up to since winning the show. As soon as the Bake Off finished, Jen and Anna rushed to meet James Morton (series three hottie) and Catherine Dresser.
Laura and I watched a soda bread demo by Fabulous Baker Brother, Tom Herbert, who MADE HIS OWN BUTTER. And we got to try it. Tom also got a picture with everyone who watched and tweeted it to his followers…and we got in on the pic! Anna also managed to meet the fabulous Brendan Lynch outside the venue who was happy to pose for a photo and grab her arm.
After nabbing all our freebies, we enjoyed lunch and a few beverages (ahem) in Manchester before heading back to Sheffield on the train.
We met more SHWI lovelies at the Showroom cinema before decamping to our first shoot location of the night: The Leadmill. The idea was to have everyone dressed to the nines and in the queue for the club. After a few variations, we got some great shots. Next up was the ‘Cutting Edge’ at Sheffield station (random fact: our President Lindsay’s Dad installed this sculpture!).
I won’t give the game away but the setup involved sparklers which were a devil to syncronise. After a few gos (and a crazy drunk guy harrassing us for a while) we got the shot before we got pneumonia.
The results are amazing and I can’t wait to see the finished calendar! All that modelling meant that we deserved a few drinks at the Sheffield Tap. Kirsty Bowen SHWI Events and Programme Officer