Diana Beard will not appear in the remaining episodes of The Great British Bake Off 2014. The reason for her sudden departure from the baking contest is illness, not the “bin-gate” fiasco that dominated the conclusion to last night’s dramatic episode.
Yesterday’s hour-long instalment saw the departure of baker Iain Watters’ who threw his melting baked alaska in the bin after it was removed from the freezer by Diana – a decision that left judges Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood no choice but to send him home.
However, despite the wave of online backlash to the episode, the BBC have confirmed that Diana’s departure from the pre-recorded show came after she was taken ill on the eve of the following weekend’s baking.
The start of next Wednesday’s episode will see presenter Mel Giedroyc announcing the news to viewers that Diana has been taken ill, before adding that she “sadly won’t be able to continue in the Bake Off tent.”
The contestants – who have maintained today on Twitter that there were no hard feelings between Iain and Diana – are then seen reacting to the news, with Nancy announcing “we’re missing her already… she’s good for the team,” while Martha calls her “my grandma in the tent… what am I going to do?”
Speaking to FreeRadio this morning about last night’s episode, Diana maintained she was on good terms with Iain, blaming “very bad editing” and stating she was “utterly confounded” by the version of events she saw play out on her screen last night.
The BBC has since released a statement, absolving Diana of any guilt.
“As shown in the episode, Iain became the fourth baker to leave the tent because he didn’t present Mary and Paul with anything to judge in the showstopper challenge and both judges were very clear about the reasoning behind the decision. Due to the extreme temperature in the tent that day, many of the bakers struggled to get their ice cream to set as seen in the episode. Diana removing Iain’s ice cream from the freezer for less than a minute was in no way responsible for Iain’s departure.”
Meanwhile, over 10,000 RadioTimes.com readers have reacted to the decision to send Iain packing with 9 out of 10 voters in disagreement with Paul and Mary’s decision.