Start date for The X Factor series nine is announced

Little Mix
Little Mix won the X Factor in 2011

ITV have confirmed the new series of the X Factor will begin on Saturday 18 August.

The talent show, which aims to find the best solo singer or group in the UK, returns for a ninth year.

Judges Gary Barlow, Tulisa Contostavlos and Louis Walsh will be joined by Nicole Scherzinger, who replaces Kelly Rowland on the panel.

Unlike previous years, acts that have or have had a management deal can still take part in the show.

Singer Rita Ora, 2006 X Factor winner Leona Lewis and former Spice Girls Mel B and Geri Halliwell appeared as guest judges during the search for Rowland's successor.

Dermot O'Leary will return as the show's presenter which made stars of artists including One Direction, Alexandra Burke and JLS.

Girl group Little Mix won the 2011 edition of the programme.

The first show for the new series will run for 75 minutes.