To Make the Stuffing
Place the bread, parsley, thyme and onion in a food processor. Process until you have fine breadcrumbs and the onion is finely chopped. Remove to a bowl, season and mix in the butter.
To Stuff the Turkey
Loosen the skin at the neck end with your hands. Pack the stuffing in, pushing it up between the flesh and the skin, but not too tightly, because it will expand during cooking. Tuck the neck flap under the bird’s back and secure with a cocktail stick. Any remaining stuffing can be cooked in a covered baking dish with the turkey. Weigh the turkey, and calculate the cooking time. Allow 15-20 minutes per ½ kg (allow 10-15 minutes per ½ kg for turkeys weighing over 8 kgs). Place the turkey, breast side up, in an oiled roasting tin.
To Cook the Turkey
Set the oven at Gas Mark 7, 220°C/450°F/Gas Mark 7
Season the turkey with salt and pepper and dust with a little flour. Rub all over with the butter, then lay the bacon slices on the breast, overlapping each other. Cover the bacon with a piece of buttered greaseproof paper. This will keep the bacon in place. Wrap the turkey loosely in foil and roast in the preset oven. After the first ¾ hour reduce the heat to Gas Mark 3, 170°C (325°F). Baste a couple of times during roasting. For the last ½ hour remove the tin foil.
To check if the turkey is cooked pierce the thickest part of the leg – the juices should run clear.
When the turkey is cooked remove from the oven, transfer to a large plate, reserve the cooking juices in the tin to make the gravy. Cover the turkey loosely with foil and allow to rest for ½ hour in a warm place while you finish the ham and roast potatoes or vegetables.