She might be the David Attenborough of cooking, but Mary Berry is no poster lady for kitchen traditions. Shunning culinary nostalgia in favour of informal dining, the former Great British Bake Off judge has revealed that she no longer uses her dining room.
“We have given up our dining room finally,” she revealed to The Times and The Sunday Times at the Cheltenham Literature Festival this past weekend.
Shocked as you may be at Berry’s startlingly contemporary revelation, the legendary cook explained that she and her husband Paul Hunnings only ever used the traditional room on special occasions like Christmas.
It wasn’t until the couple, who have been married for 51 years, recently moved house that Berry ditched her dining room once and for all, using the extra space to expand her kitchen, The Times reports.
Berry isn’t the only one championing the demise of the dining room, a recent survey revealed that just 52 per cent of Brits believe it to be a necessity, with most of us choosing to dine elsewhere.
The One Pole study, conducted by furniture retailer Fishpools, surveyed 1,000 adults and found that the living room was the preferred dining site in the home. Like Berry and her husband, one in four admitted to only using their formal dining room during occasions such as Christmas or Easter, or when they had guests over. Fast-paced lifestyles and lack of space might also play its part in our reluctance to dine formally, with some of us using our dining room as a glorified storage container.
Storage aside, there are an endless number of things you could do with the extra room: a home cinema; an office; a giant ball pit… so much space for activities. It’s only a matter of time until one lucky home-owning millennial turns theirs into a craft brewery.
So, if you haven’t already, get down with the kids like Berry and mourn the death of the dining room in style.