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A winning recipe was the icing on the cake for estate agency staff tasked with creating a confectionary masterpiece for charity.

Employees from across six branches of J W Wood donned their oven gloves and aprons to take part in Comic Relief’s Red Nose day bake off.

Inspired by queen of cakes Mary Berry, the aspiring bakers rose to the challenge of creating a mouth-watering display of home baked goodies, helping to raise £250 for this year’s campaign.

J W Wood, Durham, sales manager Pauline Burton, who organised the event, said: “This is the first time ever that we have challenged our staff to a bake off and for some it’s been the first time they have ever baked a cake in their life.

“All of our departments and branches were involved including commercial, professional, lettings and administration, from Chester-le-Street, Stanley, Consett, Darlington, Bishop Auckland and Durham.

“It’s been a real team effort and the £125 we managed to raise will be matched by J W Wood which is brilliant for the charity.”

The cakes included a melted chocolate covered strawberry masterpiece, a J W Wood for sale sign and a desirable three bedroom detached chocolate house. They were judged by confectionary connoisseur Dorothy Slater from Durham’s Elvet Methodist Church.

Marking all the cakes on their presentation, texture and taste, Dorothy awarded the winning entry to a lemon drizzle Nose Ark baked by admin team member Mike Longstaff.

“There were some incredibly delicious entries and it was incredibly hard to judge but the lemon cake really was delicious,” she said.

“I was truly impressed with the baking talent on offer and even though there can only be one winner it’s really the taking part for charity that counts – as well as the calories.”

Master baker Mike, who entered his fourth attempt after his previous three cakes were eaten by his team, added: “I hadn’t baked a cake since I was six years old but because I wasn’t in the room when we were given the challenge I drew the short straw and had to be the cook. I’m incredibly proud but more than a bit embarrassed to be the winner.”

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