The Great British Bake Off winner John Whaite opened this year’s Manchester Christmas Markets this morning at Exchange Square.
John, 23, who is already in the Christmas spirit, told MM it had been a whirlwind few weeks since his stunning triumph in October.
Manchester City Council expect more than 1.5million people to visit the attractions running until Sunday 23 December bringing a £50million boost to the economy.
He said: “It feels great to be here in my home town, I come down every year so it’s an honour to be launching it.”
The market will have 300 stalls offering the finest food, drink, arts and crafts from across Europe, including the Christmas Pyramid which has come all the way from Berlin for the first time.
Councillor Pat Karney, Manchester Council’s Christmas Spokesman, said today how excited he is about the prospects the market will bring to the city.
He said: “It will bring a huge boost, there are lots of young people who work in the city that will benefit.
“I love Christmas. If the council let me have my way the lights would be up at the beginning of August.”
ALL SMILES: John Whaite at the launch, posing with the iconic market mugs
John and Cllr Karney posed for the cameras with this year’s Christmas Markets mugs – a much anticipated feature of the entire event.
Cllr Karney said: “It’s a great pleasure to have John here. I love baking and watched the whole series. Everyone in Manchester was behind him.”
John’s baking credentials will once again be under the spotlight, but this time at home over the festive period.
He said he always makes the Christmas cake along with family favourite bread and butter pudding.
“The main thing if you are baking this Christmas is to enjoy it, taste everything as you go and follow a recipe,” he added.
For further information about the market, visit: www.manchester.gov.uk/christmas