Iconic 1970s children show The Clangers is to return to television sets after a four decade absence, broadcaster BBC announced on Tuesday.

The pink-snouted woollen aliens and companions the soup dragon, the froglets and the iron chicken are to feature in a new set of programmes for BBC children's channel CBeebies.

The show was first aired in 1969 and the last was made in 1974, but the episodes have been repeated ever since.

Co-creator Peter Firmin is the executive producer behind the new £5 million series, which is to be screened in 2015.

"We hope to engage and entertain children of all ages and their families, just as Oliver (Postgate, co-creator) and I did all those years ago," he said.

"The new series will include great storytelling with lots of heart. It will also be technically improved," he added.