It’s soon time to come dine in Chippenham, as four amateur cooks do battle to host the best dinner party for a hit TV show.
A forthcoming episode of Channel 4’s Come Dine With Me was filmed around the town, featuring four eager competitors hoping to win a £1,000 prize and the title of best host.
Fleur Van Heijningen, 28, of Brook Drive, Corsham, Keith McEvoy, 38, of Buzzard Road, Calne, Terhi Ikonen, 46, from Middle Common, Kington Langley, and Mark Lamputt, 31, from Freshford, took turns hosting dinner parties each night, each preparing a three-course meal, then being graded by their guests.
Mr McEvoy, who works for the RAF at Brize Norton, said: “It was excellent. I had a really good time, and it was nice meeting new people.
“I’ve only got a small kitchen, so I’m used to having lots of people around me when I’m cooking, with my wife and kids here.
“They mix people up so you can bounce off each other, but as it turned out I think all four of us were similar fun-loving people and didn’t take it too seriously, so we all had a laugh.”
Miss Ikonen, a musician, had an extra surprise when it came to her turn to play host. She said: “I did my own entertainment. I had my guitar with me and I sang two songs I had written and everyone was singing along.”
Each of the contestants spent a whole day filming ahead of their turn to host. Miss Van Heijningen, who runs Theodora’s florist in the High Street, said: “The film crew arrived at 10am and didn’t leave until gone midnight, so it was quite stressful. Everything has to be filmed so you can take them through what you are doing, and if you do it wrong you have to do it again and again.
“I never thought I would get on to the show, and it wasn’t until afterwards that it all sank in.
“I had a Greek menu, and we did plate smashing at the end of the night, which was definitively my favourite part of the evening.”
The drinks were flowing at the final party, hosted by personal trainer Mark Lamputt. He said:“The starter went down like a ton of bricks, but everyone was absolutely steaming by the end of the night, so we still all enjoyed it. I have never hosted a dinner party before, so it was a challenge.”
The show will be aired on Channel 4 next month, when the winner will be revealed.