A PETITION has been launched in a bid for Darwen to get independence from Blackburn.

The change.org petition was set up by Izzy Ahmad and currently has just over 800 signatures.

Izzy says that it was set up to try and get the town the financial support that it deserves.

Izzy said: “We need a big change, a change that gives us more control of our own affairs and surroundings.

"As residents of Darwen, we are sick and tired of being second best and waiting for dribs and drabs from Blackburn with Darwen Council.

“We want full control to manage our own affairs, road repairs, school funding and money that we are entitled to, which is to make Darwen a better place for all the residents.”

Darwen Town Council’s Roy Davies is backing the move and said that the town needs to break away, especially as the population is rising.

Councillor Davies said: “People do want independence from Blackburn.

“We are always being dictated to and we don’t get our fair share.”

Darwen used to be independent and joined Blackburn in 1974.

The population of the town is approximately at 30,000 and councillor Davies also said that a change is needed to cater for this.

He said: “We don’t even have a shoe shop in the town. We are expected to travel to Blackburn to shop, there's no decent places for kids to hang out, for example a place like The Mall and it’s ridiculous.

“We are a growing town and that needs to be taken into account.

“Darreners need to sign this petition, it would be hard to break away but it’s not impossible to do.”

Supporter David Hacking said: “I have seen my town become a shell of its former self while Blackburn prospers, we want our independence back.”

Another Darrener in favour of the petition, Pauline Steele, said: “Darwen was a lovely town before Blackburn got its hands on us."

She added: “We also want our Mayoral chain back.”

To sign the petition click here.