FORGET the Great British Bake Off because this week it is all about the great British sandwich.

Steeped in history and dating all the way back to 1700s, this has been a staple in ‘proper’ households for centuries.

And, it’s all thanks to the ingenuity of the great John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich, who decided to get his servants to stick two slices of bread either side of his meat so he could play cards without breaking for dinner.

Here we are almost 300 years on celebrating British Sandwich Week which runs from Sunday (May 11) to May 17.

As a nation of bread lovers in all its various incarnations, the possibilities are endless before you even get to the filling.

So now it’s not just all about what’s inside, but how it compliments what’s also on the outside.

Whether it’s a fancy Italian ciabatta with mozzarella, tomato and basil or just your bog standard tuna mayo on sliced white, it really doesn’t matter.

Make a meal of it or grab and go...

Head to Watson and Woollard, Kendal, for your traditional cut meats. They’ve got roast ham at £1.55 per 100g, roast turkey at £1.50 per 100g, and roast beef at £1.69 per 100g - perfect with horseradish and watercress.

Or why not try your sarnies with rocket from Growing with Grace, Clapham, at £1.99 for a 100g bag.

Get colourful and creative and purchase one of their salad bags at £1.99, which are freshly picked and packed full of oriental leaves, rocket, mizuna, and edible flowers including chive flowers, nasturtium, and heart’s ease.

Over the year the growers put more than 70 different ingredients in their salad selections.

The Courtyard Dairy, Settle, has another sandwich essential on offer in the form of cheese. They have the crumbly Mrs Kirkham’s Lancashire at £17.50 per kilo - the only traditional Lancashire left. Buttery and rich, it has a freshness that goes well with chutney.

For something a little extravagant, push the boat out with a bit of Pecorino with truffle at £25 per kilo. This hard Italian cheese is ideal with pesto and parma ham on a chewy ciabatta.

Another household favourite is of course the bacon or sausage (or both) buttie. Higginsons Butchers, Grange-over-Sands, have traditional sweet cured bacon at £11.99 per kilo so go down the breakfast route, or indulge in a BLT.

Pick and mix from any of their sausages at £8.99 for 3lb and keep it simple on sliced white with good old tomato ketchup.

Kendal Fisheries have smoked mackerel at £10.89 per kilo, or try out an open brown bread sandwich loaded with leaves and their fresh prawns at £2.20 per 100g or fresh local shrimps at £3.80 per 100g.

If you’re on the go, Hazelmere Cafe and Bakery, Grange-over-Sands, have daily specials sandwiches for takeaway with chicken tikka at £3.65, locally sourced honey roast ham at £2.05 or pork sausage and caramelised onion at £2.60.

In Kendal, take away hot sarnies from Baba Ganoush who have barbecue pulled pork with coleslaw and jalapeno peppers or caponata and mozzarella at £3.95.

Burton Community Stores have a new range of paninis for takeout at about £3 each and include tuna melt, ham and cheese and bacon, brie and cranberry.