Paul Hollywood’s GBBO future ‘looks uncertain’ as scandals ‘leave bad taste’
When The Great British Bake Off first launched in 2010, judge Paul Hollywood became an overnight hit with the audience.
His piercing blue eyes and silver-fox looks saw him pegged as the George Clooney of cooking, while his enduring marriage to wife Alex only added to his nice guy appeal.
But that image was shattered in 2013 when Paul headed to the US to host The American Baking Competition.
By the end of his four and a half week trip he'd embarked on a lusty affair with fellow judge and TV chef Marcela Valladolid, then 35.
And as soon as he returned to the UK, he moved out of his marital home and into a bachelor pad before having a change of heart and declaring the affair a 'mistake'.
Alex took him back, but in 2017 more scandal hit when he started dating 20-something barmaid, Summer Monteys-Fullam, from their local pub.
Both have denied having an affair, insisting they only got together after his 19-year marriage to Alex ended.
But more drama arrived last month when Summer dumped him on the spot after he allegedly tried to get her to sign a non-disclosure agreement that would ban her from talking to anyone – including friends and family – about their relationship.
They're now involved in a messy spat with Summer threatening to publish a book after Paul accused her of setting up pictures with the paparazzi.
And the timing couldn't be worse, with family favourite Bake Off set to return to screens on Tuesday, August 27.
So what could the scandal mean for the star?
Celebrity PR expert Rob Cooper believes his falling popularity could leave his future on the show in a precarious position.
"Paul Hollywood is unlikely to be dropped from the 2019 series of Bake Off, but it is very likely there has already been talks on whether he should be part of Bake Off’s future from 2020 onwards," Rob tells Mirror Online.
He predicts that while viewing figures could initially go up as curious fans switch on, the long-term effects of the scandal could cost the show dearly.
"Viewers are likely to tune in to the next series due to the public interest surrounding him at the moment, but the bigger issue is the fact he’s coming across extremely unlikeable behind the scenes," Rob explains.
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