A FORMER mayor of Pendle and executive member on the borough council, Cllr Nawaz Ahmed, has joined the Conservative Party.

Cllr Nawaz, who has represented Brierfield ward since 2003, resigned from the Labour Party last week and has sat as an independent councillor since.

He said: "Over several months I’ve seen the work done by the Conservative Group and Pendle’s MP, Andrew Stephenson.

"I came to realise the only party that can represent everyone in Pendle, is the Conservative Party.

"I’m delighted to be joining a hardworking and motivated group of councillors.”

Tory group leader Cllr Joe Cooney, said: “I’m delighted Nawaz has agreed to join the Conservative Group.

"He is a very experienced and well respected councillor whose primary focus is improving Brierfield for all its residents."

The make-up of Pendle Council is now 24 Conservatives, 15 Labour, 9 Liberal Democrats and 1 BNP.