MAISIE the Cat is to be given a new voice by one of Scotland's best-loved comedians.

The Morningside moggy, whose adventures have thrilled children for nearly 20 years, is making her television debut.

But there will be a familiar lilt in her voice as comedian Stanley Baxter comes out of retirement to bring Maisie and her pals to life.

The man of many voices has been working with producers to provide the vocals for character in the new cartoon series which chronicles Maisie's tales.

Mr Baxter, 73, said although he has virtually retired from stage and screen it was challenge he could not resist.

He said: ''I've done countless voice-overs through the years but this is a particularly fun thing to do as well as a challenge.

''For one episode I did eight different voices but the average will be half a dozen.''

Children everywhere have turned kilt-wearing tabby Maisie into a household personality as they delight in tales of her adventures with her friends in Edinburgh and on their travels.

Created by former art teacher Aileen Paterson, Maisie was borne through personal tragedy.

She created the character after the death of her 11-year-old son Max from leukaemia in 1980, when she took time off work to try to come to terms with her grief.

But she is looking forward to seeing Maisie come to life on television.

She said: ''To have Stanley so deeply involved is a tremendous boost. He is very good at speaking ''pan loaf'', the Edinburgh term for speaking hoity-toity Morningside.''

Maisie and fellow feline friends Professor Mackenzie and Mrs McKitty will appear in cartoon form on STV in the autumn.