THE three leading political parties in Pendle are locked in talks over who will form the council leadership in the coming year.

Over the past two years the council has been run between the Liberal Democrats and the Conservatives, with a shared executive consisting of councillors from the two parties, led by Tory leader Coun Joe Cooney.

Again Lib Dems, despite having 11 councillors to Labour’s 18 and the Conservatives 19, will hold the key to the leadership of the council.

Lib Dem councillor Tony Greaves said he was ‘disappointed’ Labour would not join an all-party executive but pledged to take up seats on a future executive.

Coun Cooney said: “I’ve met with a representative of the Lib Dems. The arrangement we have had for the past two years have worked well in the interests of the residents of Pendle and I expect that any new executive to contain both of our parties.”

Coun Mohammed Iqbal, Labour group leader, declined to comment ahead of upcoming talks.