Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman have ensured fans of BBC drama Sherlock that they are in for a treat with season three.

Cumberbatch told Digital Spy that he couldn't wait to find out Sherlock's fate following the slueth's rooftop plunge at the end of the last series, "I think you're in for a treat . . . I was too curious not to ask and figure it out myself, I think I sort of got into the same obsession that the nation did before we did it.

"Without meaning to patronise at all, because I don't prescribe behaviours - although it's been reported that I do - my personal preference is being surprised in the moment of watching something rather than knowing ahead of time. But I also understand why everyone's desperate to know because it's frustrating. It's witty and loving and intelligent enough for people to actually really enjoy it."

His co-star Martin Freeman added, "It's very satisfying. It's Mark Gatiss' script that we're doing and it's rather beautiful, as I would hope and expect. It's great.

"I guessed parts of it but it was unfair really because Steven [Moffat] and Mark had intimated to us some of the ingredients that it might be anyway, so I wasn't dealing with a complete blank canvas. I am more impressed with the people who have nothing to do with the show. they were quite close."

Sherlock returns to our screen on New Years Day on BBC 1.