Junior doctors in England will take part in fresh industrial action over a new contract that ministers are imposing on them, union leaders say.

The British Medical Association leadership has sanctioned renewed action after members rejected the deal brokered between the union and government earlier this year.

The BMA has said members felt it did not do enough to reward those who work the most weekends and there was strong opposition to the fact that it was being forced on them.

Details of what form the industrial action will take is expected soon. Confidential papers drawn up by the BMA have suggested there could be five-day strikes each month for the rest of the year.

The announcement reignites the long-running and bitter dispute. Junior doctors have taken part in six days of strikes this year, including two all-out stoppages.

Industrial action was put on hold in May when the two sides got back round the table at conciliation service Acas.

That resulted in a new contract being agreed, which BMA leaders encouraged members to accept.

But when it was put to the vote, 58 per cent of medics rejected it, prompting the resignation of the BMA junior doctor leader Johann Malawana and ministers to once again announce they would impose the new terms and conditions.

The first doctors are due to go on to the new contract in October.

A new junior doctor leader, Ellen McCourt, has been appointed and in August she agreed with other junior doctors at the BMA that there was a desire for more industrial action after internal polling of members showed they wanted to continue the fight.

That request has now been accepted by the BMA's governing council.