VETERAN Tory politician Cllr Jimmy Eaton has explained why he is risking expulsion from the party by standing as an Independent.

The Greensclough borough councillor will take on official Conservative candidate Margaret Pendlebury in Thursday's Lancashire County Council election for Rossendale East.

The 71-year-old said: "The party rules were broken when I was deselected for the division which I had represented for several years.

"Margaret Pendlebury was on the original selection committee so should not have been chosen as the candidate.

"It is against rule 19 of the Lancashire Conservative Party constitution.

"I am disappointed and frustrated. I accept they will kick me out of the party. It is a rum do."

Rossendale and Darwen Conservative Association vice-chairman David Foxcroft said: "No rules were broken.

"Margaret Pendlebury was on the original selection panel when Cllr Easton was initially not chosen.

"There was then a second panel, for which she put her name forward, but she was not on the panel.

"No decision has been taken on Cllr Eaton's membership of the party."