David Walliams has explained that he is releasing free audio stories daily so children will have an alternative to the park during the coronavirus epidemic.

On Monday the author and TV star, 48, announced he was giving away 30 free recordings from his World’s Worst Children series, with each instalment arriving at 11am each day.

The news came during the first week of home-schooling for many parents, following the closure of classrooms to the majority of pupils due to the outbreak.

Appearing on Zoe Ball’s BBC Radio 2 Breakfast Show, he said he was spending his time in self-isolation writing more children’s books.

The Britain’s Got Talent judge said: “I wrote these books called The World’s Worst Children, and I did three volumes of them, and they were short stories so there were 10 in each book.

“If you can do your maths, you can work out that that is 30 stories. And so I said to the publishers: ‘Let’s roll them out for free, and we’ll do one every day.’

“So at about 11 o’clock every day, when kids have hopefully done some of the school work with their parents, there’s a chance for them to have a break for a bit because it’s not that easy for anyone to go outside, not even to the park or anything.

David Walliams visits Flakefleet Primary
David Walliams with schoolchildren (Peter Byrne/PA)

“So I thought it would be fun if they could listen to the stories.”

Walliams’ books, including 2008 debut The Boy In The Dress, and follow-ups Mr Stink, Gangsta Granny and Ratburger, have topped best-seller lists.

Describing his situation, Walliams said: “I’m lying in bed with one of my doggies at the moment, so we’re actually having quite a nice cuddle but I’m kind of lucky because I can work from home.

“I can write books which is what I’m doing, but my love and best wishes go out to all those people who are really fighting this, especially those who work for the NHS who are doing this absolutely incredible job against all the odds.

“So I would not complain for an instant that I am stuck at home writings books when something much more serious is going on.”