A NEW BBC drama is in the last week of filming on location in the Lake District.

The A Word, which is due to air in the spring, is the story of a seemingly regular family whose youngest son is diagnosed with autism.

It is billed by the BBC as being a funny and thought-provoking series about parenthood and childhood.

The core cast is made up of Christopher Eccleston (Dr Who) Lee Ingleby (Our Zoo), Morven Christie (Grantchester), Greg McHugh (Fresh Meat), Vinette Robinson (Sherlock) and six-year-old Max Vento.

Christopher Eccleston, who used to visit the Lake District regularly as a child, said: "I was probably more prepared than a lot of the cast and crew because I knew what it was like to holiday here but I also know what it's like with the weather and the challenging environment.

"The locals have been very supportive. There's a great deal of interest and warmth and support for what we are doing."

Producer Marcus Wilson, who has also worked on Luther and Life on Mars, describes the setting for The A Word as a 'composite Lake District Town' with a lot of the filming taking place around Coniston and Broughton-in-Furness.

He said: "The show is set all over the Lakes. We were looking to find the perfect town that wasn't too big or too small but Broughton has a square which brings a great focus point to it."

The A Word was written by award-winning writer Peter Bowker who believes the Lake District provides the perfect backdrop for the story.

"I wanted a place that was both beautiful and threatening and I thought the landscape would do the work for me," he said. "I wanted a place that on the surface was a perfect place to raise a child. But if you maybe had a child who was different, and maybe had problems, you would struggle with access to services and things."