Soaking up some sun on a French holiday, Paul Hollywood’s ex-wife looks happy and relaxed as she is seen for the first time since the TV chef was dumped his young lover, Summer Monteys-Fullam.
While Bake Off host Paul, 53, is getting over the collapse of his two-year relationship to 24-year-old Summer, Alex enjoyed a carefree stroll through a traditional French street market this morning today.
Dressed in white Ralph Lauren shorts, khaki cotton top and leather sandals, Alex chatted happily in French with stall owners selling pastries, cheese and basket bags.
The mother-of-one was surrounded by girlfriends as she sampled mouthfuls of rabbit paté and salmon ‘feuillette’ pastries, before buying some.
An onlooker said: ‘Alex looked like she didn’t have a care in the world. She was smiling and happy and really enjoying herself. You’d never know from her demeanour that she had everything going on with her ex-husband and the divorce back home.
‘She was taking a great interest in the food on offer and asked lots of questions in French to the man who was selling the pastries.’
Hollywood was sensationally dumped by girlfriend Summer last week after he asked her to sign a legal gagging agreement.
The newly divorced Bake Off judge drew up a non-disclosure agreement banning her from discussing their relationship.
She feared the draconian document could leave her unable to speak to her family and friends about the relationship.
The agreement drawn up Paul’s lawyers demanded that could not discuss their sex, telly judge Paul’s wealth or anything about their private lives.
But she flatly refused and decided the trust had gone in their two-year love affair.
Summer, who Paul met at local pub in the summer of 2017, told him it was over in showdown talks on Wednesday evening.
She had already started to move her belongings into mum’s Sabina’s house in nearby Ickham, Kent.
Just after midnight she took the rest of her belongings, including her dogs, back to her family home.
Summer told friends it was ‘over for good’ and accused him of being ‘controlling’ after he asked her to the agreement.
She feared that it meant she couldn’t even talk to friends and family about their relationship.
But a defiant Hollywood broke his silence on the break-up by suggesting Summer is a money-grabber and declaring: ‘There’s always two sides to a story – you’ve only heard one’.
Accusing Summer of trying to ‘dupe’ the public, trying to cash-in on their split and attempting to ‘play games’, he wrote: ‘Thank you for your messages I’ve been receiving it means a lot.
My silence on any matters is not a sign of weakness or agreement of what’s been said, merely I prefer a quiet life away from my day job.
‘Take what’s read with a pinch of salt and read between the lines. I know the public can’t be duped into believing what’s out there from a person making money selling stories and continuously courting the paps.
He added: ‘There’s always two sides to a story you’ve only heard one.. but alas I don’t play those games’.
And continuing their war of words, his scorned ex said she refused to rein in their bitter feud and liked social media posts branding him an ‘old fart’.
Summer also liked comments calling him ‘gross’ and saying she could ‘do better’.
Another user showed support for the ex-barmaid for having to ‘tolerate coercive behaviour’.
Meanwhile a world away from the drama that’s put a saggy bottom in her former husband’s sour love life, Alex looked like the cat that got the cream in the south of France.
The acclaimed food writer, who is in the midst of agreeing a settlement to her £10 million divorce from Hollywood, meandered by the cheese stall and found time to purchase a brightly coloured hand-woven basket.
Alex, who met the baker when they were both working in Cyprus, has told how she refused to crack up when her marriage broke down two years ago.
In a moving interview she said: ‘I’m not going to lie and say it hasn’t been difficult, but I’m not broken.
‘Divorce hurts. I was married for 20 years. But you keep going.
‘I’ve had some dark times even very recently but you live with it and you find out who you are now, who you want to be and where you want to be.’
The Hollywoods announced they were separating in November 2017 but their divorce was only finalized with a decree nisi on July 19 this year.
Alex has also revealed how she has always loved France and being by the sea.
She said: ‘We lived by the sea and I just remember a sense of freedom, the doors to our house open to friends, and my mum constantly cooking delicious meals, including pissaladiere, a French version of pizza, covered in caramalised onions and anchovies.’