BBC 'fighting' to keep The Great British Bake Off judges Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood

Bosses reportedly launch bidding war to stop them going to Channel 4

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Channel 4 could be on the verge of losing judges Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood from The Great British Bake Off - as the BBC is reportedly "bending over backwards" to hold on to them.

Bake Off has already lost its presenters Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins this week, with the pair quitting in protest over the show's move to C4.

And according to The Mirror, the BBC has now launched a 'frantic counter offensive' in the hope they'll also stop Mary and Paul from jumping ship.

Mary is understood to be the main concern, with a source explaining: "The BBC see Mary as being their premiere TV chef.

"She sums up their branding completely - she is quintessentially British, with strong family values and is a talented, homely chef with no gimmicks.

"They are pulling out all the stops to keep her at the channel, and are showering her with offers for different formats. They’ve told Mary she can have whatever shows she likes."

However, bosses are also keen to keep Paul, who was recently reported to have landed a role hosting a new BBC motoring format.

They could also be set to reward Mel and Sue for their loyalty - and may even reunite the entire gang on a future show.

"All four of the show’s stars have a great relationship with one another, so they’re floating the idea of reuniting all four of them in a new format," the insider added.

"Mel and Sue have shown true loyalty to the Beeb, so there are plenty of offers flooding their way, now, too."

The news is worrying for Channel 4 chiefs, who are said to be "incandescent with rage" over Mel and Sue's departure.

Mary's husband Paul Hunnings told the Daily Mail earlier this week that she is "very happy with the BBC" - and that the duo's exit "would be a factor" in her decision on whether or not to stick with Bake Off.

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