TAKE P&O Cruises’ Southampton-based flagship Britannia, mix in 10 amateur celebrity chefs and add the godfather of British cooking, Marco Pierre White.

That is the simple recipe for Battlechefs, a new cookery contest set at sea.

Celebrities including Blur musician Alex James, actor Keith Duffy and comedian Jenny Eclair will take it in turns to command the cookery club kitchen on Britannia before being judged by the infamous restaurateur.

Filmed across two Mediterranean cruises, the first voyage visits ports in Vigo, Lisbon, Cadiz, Valencia and Cartagena and the second Barcelona, Rome, Cannes, Ajaccio and Alicante.

Each cruise hosts a self contained competition which sees five celebrities step up to the plate and put their culinary skills to the test as they assume the role of head chef.

Joining Alex James and Jenny Eclair on the first cruise are actress and impressionist Debra Stephenson, of Playing the Field and Bad Girls, choreographer Jason Gardiner and Olympic long jump gold medallist Greg Rutherford.

Meanwhile, Keith Duffy of Coronation Street and John Partridge of EastEnders set sail with former JLS band member JB Gill, fashion expert Susannah Constantine and X Factor winner Sam Bailey.

The trainee chefs sail from port to port discovering stories about each location and learning how to cook local specialities.

With their new found skills they are split into teams to prepare a meal to impress Marco, the captain and his VIP guests.

P&O Cruises vice president of marketing Christopher Edgington said: “We are very excited that Britannia is to star on UKTV’s Battlechefs, showcasing the state-of-the-art Cookery Club onboard as the perfect backdrop for celebrities to prepare their speciality meals.

“To set a celebrity-led cookery contest at sea is a TV first and we are proud to be involved in the show.

"The channel provides an ideal audience to introduce newcomers to cruising, highlight the P&O Cruises food experience and show the excellent facilities Britannia offers guests.

“We will be encouraging all our past and present guests to tune in for the first episode and be part of the Battlechefs experience.”

The programme will be aired on UKTV’s W channel from Monday, April 4, at 8pm. One hour episodes of Battlechefs will be shown each weekday at 8pm from April 4.