Strange but true: Olympic torch to light up EastEnders

Katy Holland
Olympic torch to light up Albert Square
Olympic torch to light up Albert Square

PA

The Olympic torch is to be carried through Albert Square and the set of EastEnders as part of its 8,000 mile tour around Britain.

The characters Fat Boy and Billy Mitchell will carry the torch as part of the live relay in the capital on July 23. They will pass some of London's best-known fictional landmarks, including the Queen Vic, Walford Market and the launderette as the torch makes its way through London to the Olympic Stadium for the opening ceremony four days later.

Part of this week's storyline involves the two characters discovering that they have been nominated as torchbearers of they Olympic flame.

The news comes just days after London tourism boss Neil MCollum was sacked for branding parts of east London 'unsafe' for visitors.

After the announcement, Perry Fenwick, who plays Billy Mitchell, said: "When we first discussed the storyline, my initial thought was that I'll now have to get fit.

"While this may be a fictional one-off for Billy Mitchell, it's a real once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for me and I am thrilled that Walford and Albert Square will be part of this amazing event."

The Olympic relay will be beamed live throughout the UK from the Elstree set on July 23.

The full torch route takes in 1,018 towns and cities and will take 70 days to complete.

Lord Coe (pictured), chairman of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games, said: "Today's announcement is a great addition to the Olympic torch route.



"I'm sure the people of Walford will now start planning their celebrations to welcome the flame to Albert Square. Along with people right round the UK, the residents of Albert Square will be getting involved to make this their moment to shine."

The torch relay will visit a host of iconic landmarks across the country from May 18. It will begin at Land's End in Cornwall on May 19, taking in sights such as the Eden Project, Stonehenge, Mount Snowdon, Giant's Causeway, the Forth Bridge, and the Flying Scotsman, on its journey from York to Thirsk.

In London, the torch will be carried to the Tower of London, Greenwich, Hampton Court, and the Camden Roundhouse.

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