We Finally Know Whether The UK's Heatwave Will Affect GBBO

July 19, 2022, made meteorological history when temperatures in Britain hit an oppressive 104 degrees Fahrenheit (or 40 degrees Celsius for those across the pond), the hottest day ever recorded there. All of Europe and 100 million people in the U.S. are feeling the high temps, and fires fueled by the dry conditions have sparked across Spain, France, Portugal, and even London.

Although Americans are accustomed to hot summers, Axios reports that Europeans are not, with just 3% of U.K. homes having air conditioning, making the temperatures much more unbearable and dangerous. According to climate scientist Dr. Simon Lee, these historically high temperatures in the U.K. are becoming more prevalent, with three of the four hottest days recorded occurring in the past four years. Climate change is making these severe weather patterns more frequent and longer lasting.

While some are fortunate enough to flee to the sea to cool off, the elderly and those with specific health issues are more vulnerable to these deadly conditions. As uncomfortable as the heat may be, many need to carry on, treating these days like any other. That includes the entertainment industry, which, according to Variety, is in the midst of growth, with the U.K.'s "high-end TV production" doubling since pre-pandemic levels. Since the industry is still recovering from the pandemic, and audiences are running out of patience waiting for their shows to return, fans are speculating whether the recent heat wave will further delay shows like "The Great British Bake Off."

Climate change affecting GBBO too?

Fans of "The Great British Bake Off ” have been in a tizzy questioning whether the temperatures would affect the show, as it's filmed outdoors under a large white tent. Past seasons have seen similar July heat waves spell disaster for bakers. Contestant Terry Hartill of Season 9 attempted to build a chocolate Eiffel Tower cake, which resulted in more of a Leaning Tower of Pisa before falling over in a melted state, recalls Grist. Season 5 was marred by the biggest GBBO scandal and backlash, when contestant Iain Watters threw another baker's melted baked Alaska into the trash in an act of revenge. And in 2020, contestant Laura Adlington likened the hot countryside tent to "Satan's kitchen." 

In light of this week's heat-related events, social media users have been making jokes about the misfortune current GBBO bakers must be enduring on set. "Bet they're filming chocolate week in the bake off tent today," former contestant Michael Chakraverty tweeted this week. Over on Reddit, one user envisioned this scenario: "Their showstopper is for sure an ice cream sculpture that must be set atop a chocolate pedestal with intricate sugar work and only one freezer that they all have to share." Others accused the show's producers of causing the heatwave for good television. Fortunately, Metro in the U.K. picked up the story and put everyone's mind to rest, confirming that the show is "not currently filming" and leaving contestants to blame their soggy bottoms on something else.