THERE will be four Independents among 32 candidates on the ballot papers when East Lancashire’s six fully-contested seats go to the polls on December 12.

Blackburn, Burnley, Hyndburn, Rossendale and Darwen, Pendle, and Ribble Valley will be fought by all four main parties ­— Conservative, Labour, Liberal Democrat and Greens.

The Brexit Party has pulled out of the three Tory-held constituencies on leader Nigel Farage’s orders.

This leaves them fighting Blackburn, Burnley, and Hyndburn ­— all currently held by Labour.

In Chorley, new House of Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle elected in 2017 for Labour will not be challenged by the Conservatives or the LibDems. However, he faces a contest with former Brexit Party candidate Mark Brexit-Smith (who changed his name and is defying Mr Farage by standing) and Green James Melling.

The other Independent General Election candidates are Rizwan Shaw (Blackburn), Karen Helsby-Entwistle (Burnley), John Richardson (Pendle) and Tony Johnson (Ribble Valley).

Rossendale and Darwen (won in 2017 by Conservative Jake berry by 3,216 votes), Pendle (held by Tory Andrew Stephenson by 1,279) and Hyndburn (won by Labour’s Graham Jones with a majority of 5,815) will be hotly-contested as marginals which could change hands

Blackburn has six candidates, Burnley seven including council leader Charlie Briggs, for the Burnley and Padiham Independent Party and Ribble Valley five. Hyndburn and Pendle have five while Rossendale and Darwen has four.


BLACKBURN: Claire Gill, Conservative and Unionist; Kate Hollern, Labour; Shah Hossain, Green; Rick Moore, Brexit; Rizwan Shah, Independent; Beth Waller-Slack, Liberal Democrat.

BURNLEY: Gordon Birtwistle, Liberal Democrat; Charlie Briggs, Burnley and Padiham Independent Party; Julie Cooper, Labour; Laura Fisk, Green; Karen Helsby-Entwistle, Independent; Antony Higginbotham, Conservative; Stewart Scott Stewart, Brexit.

HYNDBURN: Sara Britcliffe, Conservative; Katrina Brockbank, Green; Gregory Butt, Brexit; Graham Jones, Labour; Adam Waller-Slack, Liberal Democrat.

PENDLE: Azhar Ali, Labour; Clare Hales, Green; Gordon Lishman, Liberal Democrat; John Richardson, Independent; Andrew Stephenson, Conservative.

RIBBLE VALLEY: Giles Bridge, Labour; Nigel Evans, Conservative; Tony Johnson, Independent; Chantelle Seddon, Liberal Democrat; Paul Yates, Green.

ROSSENDALE AND DARWEN: Alyson Barnes, Labour; Jake Berry, Conservative; Sarah Hall, Green; Paul Valentine, Liberal Democrat.

CHORLEY: Mark Brexit-Smith, Independent; Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker; James Melling, Green.