TV host and comedy writer Denis Norden has died aged 96, his family has said.

The It’ll Be Alright on the Night host died on Wednesday morning after spending “many weeks” at the Royal Free Hospital in London, a statement said.

Norden wrote his first script for the BBC – Let’s Go to the Holborn – at the age of 19.

He teamed up with comic Frank Muir between 1947 and the early 1960s, writing comedies including BBC radio’s Take It From Here.

In 1977, Norden became the host of the ITV show, It’ll Be Alright On The Night, and he presented it until his retirement aged 84 in 2006.

Norden’s children, Nick and Maggie, said they wanted to thank “all the dedicated staff and doctors who have looked after him – with much devotion”.

“A wonderful dad, a loving grandfather and great-great-grandfather – he gave his laughter-mongering to so many.”

“He will be in our hearts forever,” the statement added.