HYACINTH BUCKET (pronounced Bouquet dahlings) is a fan of High Tea.
But the TV depiction of the ultimate social climber may actually find her finger-crooking tea-time ritual out of favour as new figures reveal that chief cake-maker Mr Kipling's treats aren't selling like, well, like the proverbial hot cakes.
While he may make exceedingly good cakes, Mr Kipling is facing an uphill struggle to turn crumbling sales figures around.
It seems everyone from our political leaders downwards are ditching the Cherry Bakewells and Battenberg for a more healthy lifestyle.
Yesterday RHM, the company that owns Mr Kipling, conceded that an £8m revamp for the product had failed to produce a rise in sales. To make matters worse, sales of Cadbury cakes, also owned by RHM, were also down. Shares in the company duly fell 7%.
Cake industry analysts, including bankers Credit Suisse First Boston, warned that the industry was not expected to pick up until at least February - even with the traditional Christmas boom in confectionery fast approaching.
The figures are the latest bad news for cake lovers, who over the past few years have seen their favourite snack fall out of favour under a welter of health promotion initiatives and diet programmes. A survey of social attitudes taken recently by the ONS showed a decline in interest in eating cakes and sweets; 6% of women and 3% of men said they had cut them out of their diet. And Education Minister Jane Davidson is one of many senior politicians to have banned the biscuit tin from the Ministerial meeting room - officials, AMs and visiting dignitaries are offered fruit instead.
It's not all bad news if you're a political high-flyer hoping for something a bit sweet to keep you going in the afternoons - your best bets are to head to the House of Lords for a toasted tea-cake, or to the Portcullis House area of the Palace of Westminster, where - in adherence to the British tradition of High Tea - scones and doughnuts (although nothing from Mr Kipling) suddenly appear in the canteen at 4pm.
Better still, head to Scotland, where First Minister Jack McConnell presents foreign visitors with top-quality Scottish shortbread as part of the diplomatic protocols.
RHM, the biggest cake company in the UK, said the overall performance of Mr Kipling along with Cadbury's Cake had been below its expectations at the time of its £958m flotation in July.
"This has been exacerbated by a slowdown in the overall cake market in the second quarter and the resultant need for higher promotional support," said the company, which employs around 16,000 staff and has sites at Rogerstone, Barry and Flint in Wales.
It said it was taking "decisive action" to help the Mr Kipling brand. In a sign of changing times, one good piece of news for the company was that the launch of the Healthiest Ever Hovis loaf, which it also owns, had helped it increase its market share.
Conservative AM David Melding, who chairs the Assembly's catering sub-committee, said he understood the reasoning behind keeping the more unhealthy options off the official menus.
"If they are banning confectionery in the sense of trying to raise standards, I would be all for that," he said. "If they are going to be serving a nice Madeira cake and a bit of dried toast instead, I would be all for that. I don't think you can beat a good old-fashioned crumpet. But you should never use Welsh butter because it's too salty. Always use French."
Page 2: Food - it's never out of the news
Page 3: Favourite cakes in political circles