Blur will receive the Outstanding Contribution to Music accolade at next year’s BRIT Awards.

The quartet – who reformed for a series of shows in 2009, but have not played together since – are thrilled to receive the prestigious honour, which comes 21 years after they released their debut album ‘Leisure’.

Frontman Damon Albarn said: “It’s great to have recognition for all the work and all the heartache and all the joy that’s gone into this band.”

Guitarist Graham Coxon insists the band – which also includes bassist Alex James and drummer Dave Rowntree – haven’t changed since they formed and is pleased they will receive the award.

He said: “Being in a band this long is like a kind of time travel.

“We’re the same gang we ever were, we’ve just landed in a different era.

“Or possibly we’re a totally different Blur still playing the old tunes in 1991 forever. I haven’t decided.

“But it’s always nice to get a Brit Award.”

Previously, the ‘Beetlebum’ hitmaker’s only success at the awards came in 1995, where they were honoured with Best British Band, Best Album for ‘Parklife’ and Best Single and Best Video for the record’s title track.

Traditionally, acts picking up the award close the ceremony with a selection of their hits, but it has not yet been confirmed whether Blur will perform at the show, which takes place at The O2 in London in February.

However, Alex has said the band plan to meet over the festive period, saying: “We’re getting together for a Christmas drink next week which is nice. We still see each other all the time. We’ll probably record again.”

The full Brit Award nominees will be announced on January 12.