England captain Dylan Hartley will miss this year's tour of South Africa and the rest of the Premiership season due to concussion, his club Northampton Saints have confirmed.

Hooker Hartley was injured in England's Six Nations match against Ireland on St Patrick's Day and has not played since.

"I'm very disappointed that I will not be available for selection for Saints' remaining Premiership games, as well England's tour to South Africa," Hartley said in a statement.

"It has been recommended by specialists that I take a break this summer and while I find that decision hard to accept, its important I listen to that advice."

England's three-test series in South Africa starts on 9 June. 

"I'm very disappointed that I will not be available for selection for Saints' remaining Premiership games, as well England's tour to South Africa," Hartley said.

"It has been recommended by specialists that I take a break this summer and, while I find that decision hard to accept, it's important I listen to that advice.

"I intend to use this time to recover fully from my injury, so I can be ready to hit the ground running when pre-season training starts later this summer."

Two years ago Hartley was ruled out for a total of 14 weeks because of two separate concussions, the last in the Grand Slam-clinching victory over France in which he was knocked out.