Devizes baker Giovanni Campanella is to compete in a new series of ITV’s search for the best independent bakery in the country.
He will make his appearance in Britain’s Best Bakery on January 16 from 4-5pm when he is shown taking on two other bread and cake makers from Hampshire and Wiltshire.
A total of 60 bakeries from all over Britain were chosen by the producers to fight for the ultimate accolade.
Mr Campanella, who runs Dolcipani Italian bakery in Old Swan Yard, Devizes, said: “The programme-makers rang me and asked me to take part.
“At first I was reluctant but they persuaded me it would be good to help promote independent bakeries and would also be a showcase for Devizes and Wiltshire.
“They spent 48 hours with me in Devizes back in the summer and filmed me and my second baker, Rafal Mozal, baking as background bits for the show.
“They also did a lot of filming in the town centre and up at Roundway.
“For me it is not about winning, it is about promoting independent bakeries and coffee shops at this time when a lot of chains are moving into towns. It is also a good way of putting Devizes on the map.
“I am not really competitive but once I was taking part that side of me did kick in a little bit.
“I just wanted to show my passion for what I do.”
Mr Campanella is sworn to secrecy about how he got on in the contest but its screening comes at a good time for him as his Dolcipani coffee shop has undergone a major revamp and has only just reopened after weeks of work.
Judges of the show, which starts on January 13 with bakers from Devon, are renowned cake maker Mich Turner and award-winning chef and artisan baker Peter Sidwell. It will be screened over six weeks each weekday from Monday to Friday at 4pm.
With the country divided into five different regions, the judges will set up a new regional judging HQ each week, to put bakeries through their paces in a series of tough culinary challenges.
The bakeries must bring a selection of their wares for the judges to taste, before battling it out side-by-side in the HQ kitchen.
After tasting, the judges will select the bakery that will be going through to each Friday’s regional final.
Priya Singh, commissioner for ITV Factual and Dayime, said: “Britain’s Best Bakery is a celebration of the UK’s wonderful array of bakeries, and a rich blend of traditions, cultures and mouth-watering recipes.
“Add to this memorable characters and their stories and you have a truly entertaining series which we are thrilled is returning to the ITV Daytime schedule.”