AN East Lancashire Labour General Election candidate has backed the development of civil nuclear technology in the area.

Pendle and Clitheroe hopeful Jonathan Hinder was speaking as hosted the annual Sydney Silverman Memorial lecture at Rolls Royce Leisure’s Merlin Suite in Barnoldswick on April 11.

The headline speaker at the event held in memory of the former Nelson and Colne MP from from 1935to 1968 was Tom Greatrex, chief executive of the Nuclear Industry Association.

He took the opportunity to discuss the important role nuclear power will play in a ‘low-carbon’ future alongside renewable energy sources.

Mr Hinder, who in March visited Rolls Royce’s Bankfield site, said: “I have always been a passionate advocate for the region’s skills and expertise, but having the opportunity to see precision complex work being done up close has given me an enhanced focus and perspective.

“The UK is a global leader in nuclear energy technology and organisations like Rolls Royce, with a committed local talent pool, are part of the reason why.

"We will see major new industries emerge from incredible technologies like small modular reactors and I’m excited by the potential this region has to be at the absolute forefront of a civil nuclear revolution.”

Opening his speech with an acknowledgement of Mr Silverman’s role in the establishment of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, Mr Greatrex claimed that in 2024 Silverman would be an advocate for civil nuclear power as a low-carbon energy source.

He said: "It was a pleasure to be in Barnoldswick and an honour to give a lecture in the memory of a much revered and well-respected former local MP- somebody who I am confident would have been at the forefront of the political imperative of tackling climate change.

“Nuclear power will be an integral part of our future de-carbonised power mix in the UK."