Pictured: Diana Rigg as seen in The Lark Ascending.
Pictured: Rachael Stirling (right) as seen in Tipping the Velvet.

Diana Rigg, known best for her roles as Emma Peel in the 1960s’ The Avengers and as Countess Teresa di Vicenzo in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, will star in an episode of Doctor Who next year as a “Yorkshire local” alongside her daughter Rachael Stirling from Tipping the Velvet, the BBC have announced.

The pair will play “a mother and daughter with a dark secret” in the second part of the seventh season, after Karen Gillan and Arthur Darvill step down in favour of the series’ new companion, played by Jenna Louise-Coleman. Stirling told the BBC she was “looking forward to the madness of Doctor Who enormously”.

Stirling has described the episode, which was written by Mark Gatiss, as “a gift of a script” with “an on-screen relationship […] that is truly delicious”. She explains that she has not worked with her mother before because “the offers have not been tempting, but when such a funny and original script comes through you know the time has come.”