For a man who can’t cook and who admits to not even liking cake that much, Wayne Courtney has achieved something Mary Berry would surely be proud of.
It has all the ingredients of being a great success with plenty of fun, community spirit, prizes and, most importantly of all, lots and lots of cake.
Wayne, 38, from Roath, introduced the idea of the Great Roath Bake Off in 2011 on the back of television’s hit series the Great British Bake Off, starring Berry and master baker Paul Hollywood.
Roath’s take on the show proved such a hit with wannabe bakers of all ages that many had to be turned away last year because of the lack of space.
He said: “As an observer, I really think it’s a labour of love. The biggest kick they’re getting is when somebody else says ‘wow, that’s beautiful’ and approves of the thing they have spent hours making.”
Now the competition is back and has moved to a bigger venue in the form of St Andrew’s Church Hall on Wellfield Road so as many people can enter as possible.
Wayne said: “It started off small and it’s just snowballed. We’re really excited about the next one.”
The competition is split into three categories – best cake, best bake in bread, pie or other, and an under-16s category for best bake or cake.
Wayne said: “It’s not very often that you see an elderly person and a young person taking part in the same event. It brings the community, of all different age groups, together. It’s nice to have that sense of community in a place like Roath where quite often your neighbours change every six months. You’ve got new students from the area plus the old-timers. It’s nice to see different people and to meet your neighbours.”
Wayne said it was important for people to remember that cakes must be made by the entrants themselves.
He said: “We’ve had a few Marks and Spencer cakes in the past. Last year, somebody left the label on the bottom. Needless to say, it didn’t win.”
Wayne said competition is fierce.
“These people go to war. People take it extremely seriously to the point that they just want to win.
“We have had a few tantrums, they take it deadly seriously,” he said.
All of the entries will be sampled by a panel of five judges, including Wales Online’s Dave Owens.
The competition costs £3 per entry, with all proceeds going to St Andrew’s Charity Fund. There will also be live music by Junior Johnson’s Midnight Mood, craft stalls and raffles as well as prizes for the winners.
The Great Roath Bake Off starts at 1pm on April 6 at St Andrew’s Church Hall.