Bake Off final draws a record 9.1m viewers
BBC Two drew its biggest audience in a decade when a peak audience of 9.1 million viewers watched clothes designer Frances Quinn win The Great British Bake Off on Tuesday.
The episode's audience averaged at 8.4m (a 33% share of the TV audience) but its ratings are expected to increase once consolidated data becomes available. Overall the fifth series drew an average of more than 7m.
Outsider Quinn won the contest despite being criticised for prioritising style over substance in earlier stages of the competition.
However her confetti-inspired wedding cake saw her take glory, when she beat philosophy student Ruby Tandoh and psychologist Kimberley Wilson.
Quinn said she had to keep a "poker face" at work after the final, which was filmed in early summer at Harptree Court in Somerset.
The 31-year-old added: "I remember watching the Wimbledon final the following week and getting so emotional... and thinking at least Andy Murray doesn't have to hide his trophy under his bed for the next three months."Media reaction
On Monday, the bookmaker Coral announced it had suspended betting on the show's outcome after a rush of bets for Quinn.
However the chef Raymond Blanc, who recently presented BBC Two's How to Cook Well, caused controversy when he suggested Ruby Tandoh had won the contest despite not having seen a preview.
He apologised on Monday after tweeting that the finalists exhibited "not much skills" and "female tears", and that Tandoh was "so thin" that it made him doubt her love for cooking and baking.
In a Guardian blog, former model Tandoh wrote she was "surprised at just how much nastiness was generated" against the show in the press and on social media.
She felt there was "an increasing degree of personal vitriol and misogyny" as the series progressed and only female bakers reached the final rounds.
However the show's ratings success means that it will transfer to BBC One in 2014.
Channel controller Charlotte Moore, who commissioned the programme in 2009 with BBC Two boss Janice Hadlow, said she hoped it would get "an even broader audience" after earning a "special place in the nation's hearts".CBBC solace
Hadlow said: "This has been a fantastic series of Great British Bake Off and I'm thrilled that it finished last night on such a high, with a record audience for BBC Two seeing Frances Quinn crowned a very worthy winner."
Presented by the pun-tastic pair Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins, the programme has been credited with reinvigorating interest in baking, introducing culinary phrases such as "soggy bottom" to a wider public.
Made by Love Productions, the show's format has been licensed by BBC Worldwide to more than 11 countries including France, Sweden and Australia.
Fans suffering from withdrawal symptoms may take some consolation in the CBBC version Junior Bake Off, which starts on 11 November.