The BBC has announced details of The Last Kingdom, a new eight-part series based on the novels of Bernard Cornwell which tells the story of a Saxon nobleman's son who is kidnapped by Vikings but later returns home to fight them.

Ben Stephenson, Controller, BBC Drama Commissioning, said of the series: "It's an epic narrative with an extraordinary creative team."

He added: "It will feel like nothing else on television, with all of the scale and intrigue of the best fantasy stories but the reality of fact."

Filming for BBC Two will begin in the autumn and the series, which is based on Cornwell's The Warrior Chronicles/Saxon Stories will be made by the makers of Downton Abbey, Carnival Films.