The creator of The Snowman has said he hates Christmas.

Illustrator and author Raymond Briggs, who also created the grumpy Father Christmas, who boasted of hating his job, has said he does not like the snow, has never built a snowman and runs from shops when he hears Walking in the Air.

Mr Briggs, of Underhill Lane, Westmeston, near Ditchling, said: “I don't like the season and I make a point of grumping about it."

The 76-year-old's picture book of The Snowman was published in 1978.

In 1982 it was made into the iconic 26 minute film, now shown on television every Christmas Day.

Mr Briggs said he was hoping to avoid a white Christmas.

But despite claiming to hate Christmas the illustrator added that he had bought a friend a pair of boxer shorts featuring The Snowman on them.