Actor Denis Lawson has joined the cast of BBC One's hit cold case detective series New Tricks as a new member of Detective Superintendent Sandra Pullman's (Amanda Redman) team.

Lawson will play retired Detective Inspector Steve McAllister, "a bundle of energetic optimism with a tendency to get personally involved in the cases he's working on".

The BBC said: "Breaking rules and ignoring procedure are all in a day's work for Pullman's team, but even by Gerry Standing's (Dennis Waterman) and Brian Lane's (Alun Armstrong) standards, Steve's unorthodox, and sometimes unprofessional, approach to policing raises a few eyebrows."

Lawson, whose credits include Star Wars, Local Hero and Bleak House, said of his casting: "I'm delighted to be joining Amanda, Alun and Dennis on New Tricks. I've long admired the show and love its ability to be warm, humorous and gritty simultaneously. I'm really looking forward to being part of it."

The ninth series of New Tricks is currently filming and will be shown on BBC One later this year.