There was definitely an air of competitive camaraderie as local councillors Billy Walker (DUP) and Terry Andrews (SDLP) squared up for another duel of their budding talents.
After having competed in a boxing match in the Bridge Centre in Killyleagh, two golf competitions at Bright Golf Club, an eating competition at Subway in Ballynahinch and a skiff rowing challenge with Killyleagh Coastal Rowing Club, the daring duo were facing off once again… this time the challenge was something very close to their hearts… their stomachs!!
Yes, they were going to take on a new challenge, something they had never done before… bake a Victoria sponge.
The fundraising effort was in aid of the Killyleagh Drop in Centre and in the kitchen last Friday evening at the Bridge Centre, Paddy McComb of the Hot Cross Bakery in the town got the two combatants lined up with the ingredients and the utensils and it was game on. Judging the outcomes of their efforts with Paddy McComb were Strangford MP Jim Shannon and Mourne’s Councillor Brian Quinn.
The moment arrived when Michelle Hagen cut the cream and raspberry jam-lined sponge cakes for he judges. Excitement was at fever pitch as the judges cast their verdicts. It was a hung decision then baker Paddy McComb had the final say. Tension filled the air.
“I’d give them both ten out of ten for making lovely moist sponges,” said Paddy, “and the jam and cream was well applied on both. I have to call it a draw!! For first efforts, they were both excellent.”
Jim Shannon MP added: “They were eventually both equal to the task. As a diabetic, I can say I will be suffering for a few days after the sampling, but the cakes were both delicious.”
And judge Brian Quinn said: “It was very well done by both Terry and Billy. They are a couple of lively characters and fair play to them for their superb efforts to fundraise for local causes. I’m looking forward to their next escapade whatever that is.”
Speaking after the bake off, Councillor Billy Walker said: “I am delighted that both Terry and myself have raised over £16,500 for good local causes to date. This challenge was great fun and we raised £250 for the Killyleagh Youth Drop In Centre.
“We are only too happy and proud to help local groups and people in need in our communities. We will continue our challenges and fundraisers and I’d like to thank all the supporters and sponsors who helped us once again.
Councillor Terry Andrews also added: “We are very happy with this event. It was great fun and you can eat the results too which is not a bad outcome.
“We’ve been on a three year journey on our fundraising and we’ve enjoyed every minute of it. We are always looking for new ideas.
“With the cut backs now facing the community sector, every penny raised is important going to good local causes and charities.”