LIBERAL Democrat leader Nick Clegg is set to visit Burnley and Pendle today as part of a whistle-stop tour.

Party officials say Mr Clegg, MP for Sheffield Hallam, will be undertaking a tour of Burnley town centre as part of his visit.

He will answer media questions in a Burnley Market café before being shown around Charter Walk and the town centre by council leader Coun Gordon Birtwistle.

The Lib Dem leader will then be taken to see one of Burnley's largest employers - aerospace industry giants Aircelle.

The MP will meet bosses at the Bancroft Road plant, in Pheasantford, to discuss the company's progress.

More than 600 people are employed at the expanding company, which makes aircraft parts, and is part of the French Safran group.

Mr Clegg will also be the guest of Lib Dems in neighbouring Pendle, where a number of other visits have been arranged.

The tour will be a boost to local Lib Dems in the run-up to the local elections on May 1.

In Burnley the Lib Dem and Tory alliance is defending a three-seat majority, with deputy leader Coun Margaret Lishman and Tory leader Coun Peter Doyle, defending their seats.

And in Pendle, where the Lib Dems have overall control and a seven-seat majority, council leader Coun Alan Davies defends Boulsworth and Nelson committee chairman David Foster is up for election in Cloverhill ward.

Election fever has already begun in earnest following the visit of Labour grandee Baroness Andrews, the Communities Minister, who revealed a £1million sports grant during an April 1 visit to Blackburn, Accrington and Burnley.

The Lib Dems are also expected to welcome the Lib Dems president Simon Hughes for a similar visit to East Lancashire on Friday.