Black British stars celebrated at National Portrait Gallery

Left to right: Sir Trevor McDonald, Naomi Campbell and Tinie TempahImage copyright
National Portrait Gallery

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Journalist Sir Trevor McDonald, model Naomi Campbell and rapper Tine Tempah

Naomi Campbell and Tinie Tempah are among 37 black British musicians, actors, politicians, models and sports stars who will feature in a major new National Portrait Gallery exhibition.

Running next year, the exhibition will also feature actor Sir Lenny Henry, journalist Sir Trevor McDonald, singer Laura Mvula and actress Thandie Newton.

It is the gallery’s biggest acquisition of Afro-Caribbean sitters.

Others will include Dizzee Rascal and Vogue’s new editor Edward Enninful.

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National Portrait Gallery

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Singer-songwriter Laura Mvula will feature in the exhibition

Labour MP Chuka Umunna and sports stars Denise Lewis and Les Ferdinand will also be featured, along with Homeland actor David Harewood, former children’s laureate Malorie Blackman, Lord Bill Morris, the first black leader of a major trade union, and John Sentamu, Britain’s first black Archbishop.

They were photographed by Simon Frederick, who originally took the shots for BBC Two documentary Black Is The New Black. He has donated the entire portfolio to the gallery.

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National Portrait Gallery

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The collection also includes Thandie Newton and Edward Enninful

The images will be part of the gallery’s primary collection and will be the subject of a major display in November 2018.

Gallery director Nicholas Cullinan said: “These striking portraits of black British sitters powerfully reflect the diversity and variety of contemporary British achievement in public life.”

The gallery’s head of photographs Phillip Prodger added: “We are proud to welcome these works into our collection, where they will be seen, enjoyed, and celebrated for generations to come.”

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Michael Barrymore wins payout over wrongful arrest

Michael BarrymoreImage copyright

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Former TV presenter Michael Barrymore has faced a lengthy court battle for damages

The entertainer Michael Barrymore is to get “more than nominal damages” after claiming his wrongful arrest by police destroyed his career.

The 65-year-old was detained 10 years ago on suspicion of the rape and murder of Stuart Lubbock in Essex.

Mr Barrymore, who was not present for the High Court decision, values his claim at more than £2.4m.

Essex Police said there were still “unanswered” questions over Mr Lubbock’s death.

Michael Barrymore: How the British TV king lost his crown

A figure for the damages to be paid to Mr Barrymore – whose real name is Michael Parker – is yet to be set.

Stuart Lubbock

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Stuart Lubbock was found dead in Michael Barrymore’s swimming pool in 2001

  • Stuart Lubbock’s body was found in the swimming pool after a party at Mr Barrymore’s home in Roydon, Essex, in 2001
  • Drugs and alcohol had been consumed at the party
  • A post-mortem examination later revealed Mr Lubbock had suffered serious internal injuries, indicating a sexual assualt
  • In 2002, an open verdict was recorded at the inquest into his death

Mr Barrymore was arrested in 2007 in connection with the 31-year-old’s death.

Mr Justice Stuart-Smith, sitting in London on Friday, ruled against the force, which had argued Mr Barrymore should only receive a nominal payout.

The judge did not decide on the sum to be awarded, as his ruling dealt only with the preliminary issue of the level of damages to be awarded to Mr Barrymore.

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Mr Barrymore’s Essex home became the centre of inquiries into how Stuart Lubbock died

The case centred on whether Essex Police had reasonable grounds to lawfully arrest Mr Barrymore.

While Mr Justice Stuart-Smith found there was “information available to the police that could have provided an arresting officer with reasonable grounds for a lawful arrest” the one officer with sufficient information to carry it out was not there at the time the entertainer was arrested.

That officer was stuck in traffic at the time, Essex Police said.

As a result, said Mr Justice Stuart-Smith, the arrest was unlawful and Mr Barrymore was therefore “entitled to recover more than nominal damages”.

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Michael Barrymore hosted a number of successful shows, including Michael Barrymore’s Saturday Night Out

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Michael Barrymore was never charged with any offence in connection with Mr Lubbock’s death

During a previous hearing, a lawyer for Mr Barrymore told how the arrest had affected his client.

Hugh Tomlinson QC said Mr Barrymore, the former host of My Kind Of People and Strike it Lucky, was never charged with any offence and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) later made it “crystal clear” there was no basis for any charges.

He said Mr Barrymore remained convinced that Mr Lubbock’s injuries were not caused at his home but he did not know what happened.

He added: “This arrest was made without any proper evidential foundation.

“However, the fact that it had happened, and the worldwide publicity it received, destroyed the claimant’s career.”

In a statement issued after the High Court hearing, Essex Police said: “Today’s judgement must not overshadow the questions which are still unanswered for Mr Lubbock’s family and friends.

“Sixteen years on they still need to know what happened to Stuart on that night, how he was injured, and who is responsible for his death.

“A small number of people know the answers to those questions and over the years loyalties change and somebody may want to help us at this time.”

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Sir Bruce Forsyth: TV legend dies aged 89

Media captionHow Brucie entertained us for decades

Sir Bruce Forsyth, the veteran entertainer and presenter of many successful TV shows, has died aged 89.

The former Strictly Come Dancing host had been unwell for some time and was in hospital earlier this year after a severe chest infection.

His long career in showbusiness began when he was aged just 14.

He became Britain’s best-paid TV star, famous for hosting game shows like The Generation Game, Play Your Cards Right and The Price is Right.

He also presented BBC One’s Strictly with Tess Daly from 2004 to 2014.

A statement from his manager Ian Wilson said: “It is with great sadness that the Forsyth family announce that Sir Bruce passed away this afternoon, peacefully at his home surrounded by his wife Wilnelia and all his children.

“A couple of weeks ago, a friend visited him and asked him what he had been doing these last 18 months.

“With a twinkle in his eye, he responded, ‘I’ve been very, very busy… being ill!’”

Sir Bruce’s family expressed their thanks to “the many people who have sent cards and letters to Bruce wishing him well over his long illness and know that they will share in part the great, great loss they feel”.

They said there would be no further comment at the moment and asked for their privacy to be respected “at this most difficult time”.

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Sir Bruce and Lady Forsyth married in 1983

BBC director general Lord Hall described Sir Bruce as “one of the greatest entertainers our country has ever known”.

“He has delighted millions of people and defined Saturday night television for decades, with shows like the Generation Game and, most recently, Strictly,” he said.

“His warmth and his wit were legendary. I’ve never seen anyone quite like him when it comes to performing in front of a crowd.

“He had a remarkable chemistry with his audience – that’s what made him such an amazing professional and why he was so loved. He has been part of all of our lives, and we’ll miss him dearly.”

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Tess Daly said she and Sir Bruce “did nothing but laugh our way through a decade of working together”

Sir Bruce’s Strictly co-host Tess Daly said she was “heartbroken”.

“From the moment we met, Bruce and I did nothing but laugh our way through a decade of working together on Strictly Come Dancing and I will never forget his generosity, his brilliant sense of humour and his drive to entertain the audiences he so loved.

“He has been there for me as a co-host, a mentor, but most importantly as a friend, and I’m extremely fortunate to have worked alongside the man who defined Saturday night entertainment for so many decades.

“He was a gentleman and a true legend and I will miss him deeply. My heart goes out to Winnie, his wife, and his beautiful family at this sad time.”

Strictly presenter Claudia Winkleman, who replaced Sir Bruce after he left the show, tweeted that he was “the King of TV, the Prince of performers and the most generous of people… all toe-tapping twinkle, all kindness, all love….

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Twitter post by @ClaudiaWinkleImage Copyright @ClaudiaWinkle

“The Bruce you saw really was the man he was. We’ll miss him so much.”

Sir Bruce had not been seen in public recently, due to ill health. He was too frail to attend the funerals of close friends Ronnie Corbett and Sir Terry Wogan last year.

In 2015, the presenter underwent keyhole surgery after suffering two aneurysms, which were discovered following a fall at his Surrey home.


First TV performance, Come and Be Televised


Last TV performance, Strictly Children in Need Special

  • 5 years The Bruce Forsyth Show

  • 10 years The Generation Game

  • 14 years Play your cards right

  • 2 catchphrases Didn’t he do well? Nice to see you, to see you nice.

TV executive and former BBC chairman Lord Grade described his friend as “an absolute master and a lovely man to boot”.

He added: “I’ve grown up with Bruce – he and I have been friends and we’ve worked together over the years. I spent a morning with him at his house two weeks ago. He had a wonderful twinkle in his eye and he was battling, battling.

“It was very sad to see him infirm at the end. I said as I left him, Bruce, you’ve still got the twinkle.”

Former chat show host Sir Michael Parkinson described the entertainer as “funny” and “irrepressible”.

He said his fondest memories of Sir Bruce were a song and dance routine they performed together on TV.

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Sir Michael Parkinson laughed as he recalled dancing with Sir Bruce on TV

“I never imagined I’d end up dancing with a comic – he was hilarious. He thought I might be better than I was.

“I remember it was the first and only time in my career when I mentally stopped and thought, what are you doing Parky – dancing with Bruce Forsyth?”

Sir Michael also praised Sir Bruce’s ability to manage his career, saying: “He was a very smart picker of knowing what the right formats were for him.

“He was very canny – we only know about the shows he said yes to, what we don’t know are the hundreds of ideas he said, ‘That’s not for me.’ He had the smartness – that’s the sign of a great star.”

BBC Radio 4 presenter Nicholas Parsons added that he was “devoted” to Sir Bruce.

“He had great charm, great humour – he was an all-round performer. He was one of the country’s most talented players – a great dancer, great singer and a comedian and also very good actor. The way he ran a game show was exceptional – a unique talent. He was a lovely man.”

The Beano tweeted a picture of Sir Bruce which appeared in the comic in 2008, describing him as an “entertainment legend”.

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Actress Kara Tointon, who won Strictly in 2010, tweeted: “An absolute showbiz legend…Rest in Peace Sir Bruce Forsyth.”

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Matt LeBlanc: Top Gear to ‘expand the comedy’

Matt LeBlanc

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Matt LeBlanc joined Top Gear in 2016

Matt LeBlanc has given viewers a taster of what they can expect from the next series of Top Gear.

The 25th season of the show – due to air in spring 2018 – will see LeBlanc return to host alongside Rory Reid and Chris Harris.

“I think we’ve tried to broaden the demographic of the show,” the presenter said.

“Try to make it not lose the petrolhead nature of it but maybe open it up to people who aren’t so petrolheady.

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LeBlanc co-presents with Rory Reid (left) and Chris Harris

“Expand the comedy, try to have bigger, broader films, but it will be more of the same in the sense it starts with the car.”

LeBlanc will return to the UK in the coming weeks to shoot footage for the show – so far he’s been filming in Norway, France, Italy and California.

“It will be closer to what it was last year versus the season before,” he added.

  • Has Matt LeBlanc ‘saved’ Top Gear?
  • What the critics said about the most recent Top Gear
  • Top Gear: Do overnight TV ratings matter?

The most recent series was more popular with critics than the one before it – which saw Chris Evans on hosting duties.

Evans hadn’t been popular with viewers and he left the show after fronting one series.

But LeBlanc declined to discuss viewing figures, which have generally been lower since the departure of previous hosts Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond.

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Matt LeBlanc was popular with viewers. Chris Evans… not so much

The trio moved to Amazon Prime to start the Grand Tour after Clarkson punched a producer. He later apologised after settling a £100,000 racial discrimination and injury claim.

BBC Two controller Patrick Holland has previously said Top Gear’s last season drew a “much healthier” audience and it should not be compared to the Clarkson era, which was a “completely different” show.

The BBC has also said that younger audiences rated the most recent series “far higher” than they did previous ones.

LeBlanc was speaking from Los Angeles as he promoted the last series of Episodes, the comedy he stars in alongside Stephen Mangan and Tamsin Greig.

The 50-year-old said it will be hard to leave behind the show, which has been a “inspiring, magic, special journey”.

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Detroit director Kathryn Bigelow urges race talks

Media captionThe team behind the film Detroit react to clashes in Charlottesville

The Oscar-winning director of a new film about the 1967 Detroit riots says talking about race in the US is “more vital than ever”.

Kathryn Bigelow was speaking as Detroit is released in the wake of the violent clashes in Charlottesville, Virginia.

She said she wanted to meet racism “head-on”, adding: “To do nothing is not an option”.

John Boyega, who stars in the film, said: “We all have a voice and we all have a responsibility to speak out.”

‘Horrific tragedy’

The London-born actor has shared footage of the clashes on Twitter, in which one person died and 19 others were injured, when a car rammed a crowd of people opposing a far-right rally.

“It’s so weird, the timing of everything – but now it makes this movie very necessary, for perspective and also to see just how little has been done, and to hopefully spark a positive conversation.”

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Entertainment One

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John Boyega said it was hard to gather his thoughts on the current events in the US

Talking about Charlottesville, Bigelow said: “It’s just a horrific tragedy and I feel the urgency to have a conversation about race in America is even more vital than ever.”

She added: “Even though this story takes place 50 years ago, it feels, sadly, very much like today and therefore tomorrow. Until there’s a meaningful conversation about race in America, I’m worried these events will keep happening.”

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Entertainment One

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Kathryn Bigelow was the first woman to win an Oscar for best director

She said she did not see the film, starring John Boyega and Will Poulter, as being “entertainment”, but rather “a dramatisation of true events”.

To that end, the film mixes in news footage from the riots – and people who were there, including Melvin Dismukes, played by Boyega, and Julie Hysell, portrayed in the film by Skins’ Hannah Murray.

Bigelow – the first woman to win a best director Oscar, for The Hurt Locker – added: “If there’s the chance for the film to generate a dialogue that’s meaningful and positive and can generate some transformation, that would of course be my greatest aspiration.

“Any opportunity to meet head-on with the pervasiveness of racism is really important.”

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Entertainment One

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Will Poulter, right, plays a police officer in the film

Boyega said at the Detroit premiere that the racism portrayed in the film felt worryingly contemporary.

He said: “It’s crazy – I find it hard to even gather my thoughts on it, it’s so unexpected and unfortunate. It’s mad, the world is changing.”

Boyega, perhaps best known as Finn in Star Wars, plays a security guard tasked with protecting a grocery shop from looters, who then becomes embroiled in the Algiers Motel incident, which left three young men dead.

Asked whether it was a departure from the sci-fi franchise, he said: “The best sci-fi has social commentary. And I have the same commitment for Star Wars as I would for Detroit. I only appear in things I would want to watch.”

Will Poulter, who plays a Detroit police officer central to the violence inflicted on residents of the motel, said of the current situation in the US: “I think for a lot of people it’s hard to believe it’s even happening. It feels like a true regression as far as the human race is concerned.”

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BBC Radio 4 to launch female-led panel show

Jo Bunting on Loose WomenImage copyright
Ken McKay/REX/Shutterstock

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Host Jo Bunting has appeared on TV shows including Loose Women and This Morning

The BBC is to launch a topical radio panel show where the host and most of the guests are women.

BBC Radio 4 has commissioned a pilot of Where’s The F In News, created and presented by Have I Got News For You series producer Jo Bunting.

The station said it would be “an energetic and intelligent female-anchored show” with a “predominantly female panel”.

The gender balance on panel shows has been a contentious issue.

‘A shedload of intelligent and funny women’

In 2014, the BBC’s director of TV pledged to have at least one woman on every such show in response to criticisms that they were too male-heavy.

Bunting said: “Apparently if a woman speaks in a meeting for 50% of the time a man speaks, he genuinely thinks she’s spoken the exact same amount as he has.

“When I read that, I thought, how can I really annoy that man? So I’ve created a show featuring a shedload of intelligent and funny women.”

The Where’s The F In News panel will “use the events, trends and talking points that they think should be top of the news agenda as a starting point for a number of fresh and funny challenges”, the BBC said.

The show is one of a raft of new comedy commissions announced by Radio 4 for 2018 and 2019.

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Daniel Craig is back as Bond: How did fans react?

Daniel Craig attends the German premiere of the new James Bond movie 'Spectre'Image copyright
Getty Images

Daniel Craig will be reprising his role as James Bond one more time.

“I just want to go out on a high note. I can’t wait,” he said on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert on Tuesday.

Although some people on social media weren’t too thrilled about the news, a lot of fans are excited about the actor’s return.

One Twitter user is so happy about the announcement that it’s probably going to be all they’ll be talking about for a while:

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James Evans wrote: “Daniel Craig is doing another James Bond and your [sic] gonna have to deal with me flailing about this for the next two weeks, at least.”

From one Craig to another, the actor has won singer Craig David’s approval too:

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The pop star tweeted: “Love this! Top boy.”

Ajay Chowdhury, editor of the James Bond International Fan Club magazine, told BBC 5 live: “He’s been the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful actor to play Bond.

“He’s made Bond such an iconic character, no-one thought Bond would still be this important and get this much attraction.”

While many fans are pleased to see Daniel Craig back as Bond, some people think it’s time to give another actor a go.

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Prem Mohanty wrote on Twitter: “Seriously Daniel Craig is too old to play James Bond, 4 movies was quite enough.”

Idris Elba had been widely tipped in the past to take over, but that’s not going to happen – yet, at least.

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A Twitter user named Hood Economist wrote: “Daniel Craig returning as Bond? Thoroughly enjoyed his Bond films but I was ready for @idriselba tbh!”

What we know about the next film so far

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Getty Images

  • It will be released in US cinemas on 8 November 2019 with a traditional earlier release in the UK
  • There’s no title yet – for now, it’s just known as Bond 25
  • It will be scripted by long-standing Bond writers Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, who have been writing the films since 1999′s The World is Not Enough
  • Daniel Craig has said this will be his last time playing 007, fulfilling his five-film contract

Trump v Bond?

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Getty Images

Bond writers Neal Purvis and Robert Wade suggested US President Donald Trump could influence the next Bond film in an interview with The Telegraph in February.

“I’m just not sure how you would go about writing a James Bond film now,” Purvis said.

“Each time, you’ve got to say something about Bond’s place in the world, which is Britain’s place in the world.

“But things are moving so quickly now, that becomes tricky. With people like Trump, the Bond villain has become a reality. So when they do another one, it will be interesting to see how they deal with the fact that the world has become a fantasy.”

Both writers originally planned to leave the series after Skyfall but returned again for Spectre three years later.

“Spectre felt like it closed off a certain way of doing Bond,” Wade said. “And I think whatever happens next will be quite different.”

Craig as Bond – in numbers

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Getty Images

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We feel sorry for whoever handles Bond’s car insurance…

  • 13 – Daniel Craig will have been James Bond for 13 years
  • 51 – his age when his final film will be released
  • $3.1bn – the total global box office takings for Craig’s Bond films so far
  • $37m – the value of the cars Bond trashed for Spectre in 2015, according to Gary Powell, the film’s chief stunt co-ordinator, who spoke to the Daily Mail

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Liz Carr: Silent Witness actress in ‘frightening’ scissor attack

Liz Carr in Silent Witness

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Liz Carr joined Silent Witness in 2012

Silent Witness actress Liz Carr has said being attacked by a man with scissors was “very frightening” but that she was “relatively unscathed”.

Carr, who plays forensic examiner Clarissa Mullery, was with her personal assistant when the assault happened near London’s Euston station.

A man has been detained under the Mental Health Act, police said.

“Thanks to everyone who has sent their love and good wishes following last week’s stabbing,” Carr said.

“Just to reassure you that whilst it was very frightening at the time, I came out of it relatively unscathed and was even back home later that night.

“Looking forward to returning to filming on Silent Witness next week where thankfully all the violence is fake!”

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The actress thanked hospital and ambulance staff

The 45-year-old, who uses a wheelchair, suffered minor cuts. Both women were taken to hospital and later discharged.

She also tweeted: “I want to say an extra thank you to the amazing paramedics, ambulance crew AE staff #SaveTheNHS.”

The incident happened on 10 August. A Scotland Yard spokesperson said: “A man – aged in his 20s – was arrested at the scene on suspicion of GBH.

“He was taken into custody at a north London police station. He was subsequently detained under the Mental Health Act.”

Carr, also a comedian whose recent work includes Assisted Suicide: The Musical, has been using a wheelchair since she was seven.

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Two days after the attack, her Silent Witness co-star Emilia Fox described Carr on Twitter as “one of the most phenomenal women alive, thank goodness!”.

Carr replied by thanking Fox for “all the love today and always”.

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Great British Bake Off: BBC moves rival cooking show in scheduling spat

Paul Hollywood, Sandi Toksvig, Noel Fielding, and Prue LeithImage copyright
Love Productions/Channel 4

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Bake Off has three new presenters when it returns later this month

The BBC is moving its new cooking show to avoid a clash with The Great British Bake Off when it launches on Channel 4.

Channel 4 has poached Bake Off from the BBC and has scheduled the new series to open at 20:00 BST on Tuesday 29 August.

The Big Family Cooking Showdown is on BBC Two at the same time on Tuesdays – but it will now move to Thursdays.

The BBC said Channel 4′s choice to move Bake Off from its previous Wednesday slot would be a “surprise” for viewers who “may see this as a cynical move”.

However, Channel 4 said: “We made the decision about where to schedule The Great British Bake Off a few months after acquiring it and we haven’t moved it since then.

“It is in the original Tuesday evening slot where the majority of past series have played.”

Bake Off has been shown on Wednesdays for the past three years, but was on Tuesdays from 2010-2013.

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BBC/Voltage TV productions

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The Big Family Cooking Showdown started on BBC Two on Tuesday

‘Room for both’

A BBC spokeswoman said: “Channel 4′s decision to move Bake Off from its long-term traditional Wednesday slot will be a surprise to many viewers who may see this as a cynical move.

“We never intended for our new cookery show to clash with theirs.

“There is room for both and we don’t, in this instance, see any public value in two public service broadcasters going head to head in this way.”

She said moving The Big Family Cooking Showdown was “in the best interest of viewers”.

The new series of Bake Off will start with cake week – one of the traditional challenges when the show was on the BBC.

Judge Paul Hollywood has moved with the show from the BBC and will be joined in the tent by Prue Leith. They have set 30 challenges for the 12 amateur bakers, which will be shown over 10 weeks.

‘Trickiest showstopper’

The Channel 4 listings give a taste of what is to come in the first offering: “The Bake Off begins with cake week, and sees the bakers take on a fruity signature challenge.

“Next, Prue sets her first technical – a children’s tea party favourite – and everyone is out to impress the new judge.

“And for their final challenge comes the trickiest showstopper ever set in the first week of Bake Off: an illusion cake. Creating these mind-blowing illusion cakes will test their baking and design skills to the limit. Paul and Prue want to see what the bakers – and their cakes – are made of.”

Comedian Noel Fielding and QI host Sandi Toksvig are the new hosts.

The BBC lost the contract to broadcast The Great British Bake Off last year after Love Productions, the makers of the show, signed a three-year deal with Channel 4.

Mary Berry, Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins subsequently decided not to move with the programme.

The Big Family Cooking Showdown debuted on BBC Two on 15 August, hosted and judged by former Bake Off winner Nadiya Hussain, presenter Zoe Ball, TV cook Rosemary Shrager and chef Giorgio Locatelli.

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Daniel Craig undecided on next James Bond film

Daniel CraigImage copyright

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Will Daniel Craig make way for a seventh Bond?

Daniel Craig has refused to confirm if he will continue playing the role of British secret agent James Bond.

Craig has been 007 in the past four Bond films and reports suggested he had agreed to carry on for the 25th film in the series in November 2019.

But he told Boston radio station Magic 106.7: “No decision has been made.

“I’m not holding out for more money or doing anything like that. It’s just all very personal decisions to be made at the moment.”

James Bond 25 announced – but where’s Daniel Craig?

He added: “I know they’re desperate to get going and I would in theory love to do it, but there is no decision just yet.”

Craig succeeded Pierce Brosnan as Bond and made his debut in Casino Royale in 2006.

He has since played the spy in Quantum of Solace (2008), Skyfall (2012) and Spectre (2015).

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