With details such as miniature pints in the pub and cups on the tea room tables, it’s a bake to set even Paul Hollywood salivating.
Lynn Nolan, 63, spent three months constructing and icing the recreation of the entire Derbyshire Dales village of Eyam using 54 whisky-soaked fruit cakes baked by locals.
The fruits of her labour went on display this week at the Church of St Lawrence in Eyam for a six-week exhibition to raise money for a community bus service. The cakes depict the village pub, shop, manor house and even a model of the Bakewell & Eyam Community Transport minibus.
They will be auctioned off as individual buildings to add to the fundraising effort.
Lynn Nolan at the Eyam Parish Church where there is a display that she has created of cakes baked to create a Derbyshire Dales village
Lynn Nolan at the Eyam Parish Church. Nolan, 63, spent three months constructing and icing the recreation of the entire Derbyshire Dales village of Eyam using 54 whisky-soaked fruit cakes baked by locals.
Mrs Nolan with her creation. A mother of two and a grandmother of four, she has even hidden LED lights in each building so the village can be lit up at night
The Red Brick House in Eyam village that has been transformed into a cake by Mrs Nolan
Mrs Nolan, a mother of two and grandmother of four, has even hidden LED lights in each building so the village can be lit up at night. She says: ‘It took 645 hours-worth of icing alone, but I think it’s been worth it. People have been leaning over the buildings and gasping when they see all the interior detail through the windows.
‘The cakes are all edible because the whisky is a preservative — the longer you leave it, the better they’ll taste!’
As well as a total of nine litres of whisky, the cakes swallowed up 608 eggs, 66lb of butter, 73lb of flour, 12 jars of apricot jam and 462lb of icing.
The retired florist lives in Youlgreave, near Bakewell, with husband Paul, 65, who is also retired. She was approached by residents in Eyam following her smaller recreation of her own village three years ago to raise funds for a church roof repair.
The Cottage, Square in Eyam (left) which has been baked as a cake (right) by Lynn Nolan
The Plague Cottages in Eyam that have been baked as a cake by Lynn Nolan
The Eyam post office baked as a cake by Mrs Nolan. Sandra Naylor, 61, a retired civil servant who now fundraises for the community bus service, said planning for the giant cake bake started in January
The Mechanics Institute, Croft Cottage and the Bulls Head that have been baked as a cake to recreate the Derbyshire village
Eyam is known as the ‘plague village’ after it went into voluntary quarantine when the bubonic plague was imported via infected fleas in a bundle of cloth in 1665.
The villagers’ selfless actions undoubtedly prevented further spread of the disease, but more than a third of Eyam’s 800-strong population was lost. In a nod to this dark history, 30 wooden rats have been hidden among the cakes’ buildings as a competition for visitors to find.
Sandra Naylor, 61, a retired civil servant who now fundraises for the community bus service, said planning for the giant cake bake started in January.
The Eyam Town Hall was made into a fruit cake for the astonishing display
Lynn Nolan bakes her magnificent fruit cakes modelled on the village of Eyam
Fruit cake in the process of being made by Mrs Nolan
Mrs Nolan in the process of baking the cakes. Three months were spent securing donations from local companies to pay for ingredients
The following three months were spent securing donations from local companies to pay for ingredients.
In May, the cakes were baked by the army of villagers, to a recipe supplied by Mrs Nolan, with ingredients she had individually measured for each building. The baked cakes were then sent back to Mrs Nolan for her to begin the assembly process.
She adds: ‘They had to be very dense fruit cakes in order to be used for building.’
The Eyam Village Cake will be auctioned at the Mechanics Institute in Eyam on November 30.
The Miners Arms and Cottage in Eyam which Ms Nolan used as inspiration to model her cake
The Miners Arms and Cottage that have been made into a cake
The Eyam Museum which was used in Mrs Nolan’s baking creation
A cake showing the Eyam museum. The Eyam Village Cake will be auctioned at the Mechanics Institute in Eyam on November 30