Bradley Wiggins to guest star on The Archers for Sport Relief

The Tour-winning cyclist and knight of the realm will turn up in Ambridge playing himself, as part of the 2014 Sport Relief celebrations

Ambridge, the sleepy, definitively English fictional village in Radio 4 soap The Archers, will welcome a very special visitor next Friday: Sir Bradley Wiggins, the laconic Tour De France-winning cyclist and Olympic champion.

Rather than take on the mutton-chopped farmer role he was born to play, he'll appear as himself, as Ambridge gets into the swing of Sport Relief and organises its own charity fundraising venture. Wiggins is the guest of honour, crowning the winner of a village contest, but will apparently get into some comic scrapes involving Lynda Snell's rusty bike.

"When I was asked to record a Sport Relief special for The Archers, there was no way I could turn it down," Wiggins said in a statement. "I grew up with it on the radio in the house, and it's not every day you get to star in the world's longest running soap opera. Meeting the cast, the writer and the director was an honour and I really hope the storyline will raise awareness about Sport Relief's amazing work, and that it shows people that everyone can get involved in Sport Relief this year."

Wiggins is in good company, as many other celebrities have previously pitched in among the sounds of crunching gravel, sometimes also in the name of charity. Princess Margaret appeared on the show in 1984, joining an NSPCC fashion show, while Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall joined a 2011 Royal visit storyline – prompting some complaints of "forelock-tugging" from fans, especially given Prince Charles's Duchy Originals shortbread was also given a hearty recommendation by one character.

Superfan John Peel had a moment of wish fulfillment when he made a cameo in 1991, as did fellow Radio 1 DJ Chris Moyles in 2004, while Judi Dench made a memorable appearance for the 10,000th episode in 1989, playing not herself but the hitherto silent character Pru Forrest.

The episode will air at 7pm on Friday 21 March on Radio 4, with the Sport Relief Games beginning the following weekend. © 2014 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds

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