The series Ultimate Big Brother will be the Channel 4 swansong for the reality show format after 11 regular series, seven celebrity editions, one youth version and the 2007 series Big Brother: Celebrity Hijack, which allowed celebrities to set Big Brother-style tasks for young contestants.The former serviceman lost both legs and an eye when a bomb exploded while he was on patrol in Belfast in 1989.
The 18-day series will feature winners and other memorable contestants from the regular series and the celebrity version.
Glamour model and the original non-celebrity winner of Celebrity Big Brother (CBB) 2006 Chantelle Houghton and her one-time husband singer Preston - whom she met during that series - were the first to join Josie in the house.Boos and cheers
Preston said he was looking for "bromance" this time around. He hugged his ex-wife, whom he met on the 2006 show, as soon as he entered although both looked surprised to see each other.
Nadia Almada, the winner of Big Brother 2004, also returned for the extended series.
She was followed by television presenter and 2001 winner Brian Dowling, showbusiness personality and 2009 CBB winner Ulrika Jonsson and racing pundit John McCririck.
US rapper Coolio performed before the crowd outside the house with a customised tune saying he was going to be the "ultimate housemate".
Housemate Makosi Musambasi from the sixth Big Brother series and Nikki Grahame from series seven also entered.
"Nasty" Nick Bateman who was thrown out of the first series of Big Brother in 2000 for trying to influence votes was the final contestant to join the lineup.
Wearing a shirt with the slogan "it's only a gameshow", he was booed by much of the crowd before he went in. He told Davina he would abide by the rules this time.