Hot on the heels of being fired from the The Apprentice last week, Rebecca Jeffery, from Asby in West Cumbria, reflects on her experiences on the BBC1 business show.

Last week Alan Sugar fired me on national TV. I guess there aren’t many people who are able to say that.

The whole experience has been incredible but, the truth is, I applied to The Apprentice on a whim.

Last New Year’s Eve, I was chatting to my brother-in-law (who is a brain surgeon and would probably be amazing on the show) and, in our wine-induced wisdom, we decided that I would be an excellent candidate on the programme… famous last words.

So in January, on the day before the applications closed, I casually applied. Four months, three auditions, a screen test, a psychological interview and 40,000 candidates later, I was offered a place on the show.

Flabbergasted is the word.

I got the call from the production team on a Wednesday afternoon whilst looking after my three-year-old son. My phone rang, I promptly bribed Ollie to stay quiet with a DVD and a packet of Quavers (standard parent tactics) and I danced around the room in excitement and genuine amazement.

In the auditions, I wasn’t the typical Apprentice buffoon. Rather than spouting insane Trump-esque declarations like “one day the whole world will chant my name”, I was smiling sweetly and chirping “I would describe my business style as like a bouncing puppy”.

Yet somehow the almighty powers at The Apprentice chose me as one of their final 18 candidates. Wow.

I was chucked out in week six – drat. I didn’t have very good luck, my team lost every single week and my own performance was essentially useless. Not too surprising when in real life I don’t like confrontation, I can’t haggle and I make nerdy jokes to put people at ease.

But I’ve got to say, I loved it all. Including the people on Twitter comparing me to a plastic spoon or as weak as a kitten with polio.

I’m certainly the accidental apprentice candidate for 2016, but at least I managed to leave with what’s been hailed as "the best taxi interview ever" – I’ve got my straight-talking Cumbrian roots to blame for that.