The BBC has denied recent reports suggeSting a move to BBC Two for children's TV.

The Guardian had claimed that after-school programming would be moved from BBC One on weekday afternoons for the first time in 61 years.

"The idea of moving children's programmes off BBC One is definitely being looked at and evaluated, alongside replacing Neighbours with another half-hour show," a BBC insider told the newspaper.

"It is coming out of BBC daytime and it is all about how share could be maximised," the insider added.

Rights to the long-running Australian soap have been snapped up by Five and ITV has seen boosted ratings since it cancelled afternoon children's programming.

However, a BBC spokesman said the likes of Lazytown, Blue Peter, Newsround and Wallace & Gromit spin-off Shaun the Sheep wouldn't be leaving the corporation's main channel in the near future.

"We don't have any current plans to change the existing pattern," he commented.

Today's children's programming on BBC One incLudes new Doctor Who spin-off The Sarah Jane Adventures, as well as Bear Behaving Badly and Hilary Duff vehicle Lizzie McGuire.

Children's programming on BBC One began with For the Children in 1946.

Despite today's announcement, it is thought that specially-targeted digital channels CBeebies and CBBC will play an increasingly important role in children's programming once the analogue TV switchover is completed in 2012.

24/09/2007 16:46:04