A COUNCIL leader in East Lancashire has announced that he will be standing down in May.

Cllr Paul White, who suffered a heart scare earlier this year, will also quit his Boulsworth seat.

The 32-year-old is also at the helm of three businesses, the Modern Milkman, a PR agency and a new bar.

He said: "This has been an incredibly difficult decision for me. It's a decision I made a number of months ago and have thought about long and hard.

"I love Pendle, I love its people. It is a place I am so passionate about. But everything I do I do to the very best of my ability and the simple fact is that my three businesses are really growing and they need my full attention.

"I need to consider my own future and the heart failure was a wake-up call for that."

Cllr White, once the north-west director of Vote Leave, was first elected in 2011 and became the first Tory majority leader for Pendle in nearly 40 years last May.

He is also the reigning Young Lancastrian of the Year and says he is especially proud of the work he did in helping to get Lyle Davy, then the youngest councillor in Europe, in 2014.

A new leader for the council will be selected after the May elections.

Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson said: "Paul has been a huge advocate for Pendle over the last eight years.

"His determination, his tenacity and his drive to improve Pendle should be applauded.

"I am sorry to see him stand down but I am sure it won’t be the last we see of him."