TORY leadership front-runner Boris Johnson has appointed Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson to boost his campaign in the North West.

The industry minister will co-ordinate efforts to rally support among the region’s Conservative MPs, councillors and rank-and-file party members.

Pendle Borough Tory group leader and Lancashire County Councillor Christian Wakeford, will act as North West volunteer co-ordinator for the ‘Back Boris’ campaign.

Mr Stephenson is a long-term supporter of Mr Johnson and served as his Parliamentary Private Secretary between 2016 and 2017.

Ribble Valley MP Nigel Evans and his Rossendale and Darwen Conservative colleague Jake Berry are also supporting the former Foreign Secretary in his bid to become the next UK Prime Minister.

Mr Stephenson said: “It is a huge honour to have been asked to help lead Boris’ leadership campaign in the North West at a time of huge excitement and opportunity for our country.

“He springs into this campaign with huge momentum, having won the support of over 50 per cent of Conservative MPs. He has demonstrated that he can bring MPs together across leave and remain lines. He is the best placed to unify our party and our country.

“Boris is the only candidate in this contest committed to delivering Brexit by October 31, which will restore trust in our politics.”

Cllr Wakeford said “I am delighted to have been asked to co-ordinate the Back Boris campaign with the voluntary party in the North West.

“This has involved the organising of campaign teams for last weekend’s hustings in Carlisle and Manchester along with upcoming members events.