Christopher Eccleston has commented on his love for the BBC’s legendary sci-fi show Doctor Who.

The actor played the Ninth Doctor for a single season in 2005 and he sent a special message to be read out a British Film Institute (BFI) event celebrating the programme's 50th anniversary.

The BFI screened two episodes from Eccleston's run as the Time Lord as part of its Doctor Who at 50 season.

Eccleston wrote: “I love the BFI. I love the Doctor and hope you enjoy this presentation. Joe Ahearne directed five of the 13 episodes of the first series. He understood the tone the show needed completely - strong, bold, pacy visuals coupled with wit, warmth and a twinkle in the performances, missus.

"If Joe agrees to direct the 100th anniversary special, I will bring my sonic and a stair-lift and - providing the Daleks don't bring theirs - I, the Ninth Doctor, vow to save the universe and all you apes in it."

Eccleston is currently filming new ITV drama Lucan, in which he plays zoo owner and gambling club host John Aspinall.