The doctor standing for the Liberal Democrats in the new Pendle and Clitheroe seat has clashed with Conservative Andrew Stephenson over the state of health services in the constituency.

Consultant Dr Anna Fryer said services were 'a scandal' as she visited the start of demolition work on The Butts Clinic in Barnoldswick with Pendle Council Lib Dem group leader Cllr David Whipp.

But Mr Stephenson, a former health minister who was Pendle MP, responded: "I am proud to have helped secure the biggest ever investment into our local NHS."

Cllr Whipp said: "People have used The Butts Clinic for generations.

"It was a much-loved facility with baby clinics and a whole raft of health care services available in a suite of treatment rooms.

Andrew StephensonAndrew Stephenson

"But the building was showing its age and services were gradually moved out.

"For years we've campaigned for a replacement health centre, but the clinic has just been flogged off to the highest bidder. It's a tragedy."

Dr Fryer said: "It's a scandal. Patients are having to travel miles to get treatment.

"Apart from a small team of midwives, the so-called new clinic on Newtown is unused.

"I'm shocked at the appalling waste and disregard for local people.

"What's happening in Barnoldswick is a reflection of what's happening to the NHS overall, the systematic demolition of a national institution, with poorer services for local people."

Mr Stephenson said: "I am pleased to see that the Lib Dem candidate has visited Pendle.

Jonathan Hinder is standing for Labour in Pendle & ClitheroeJonathan Hinder is standing for Labour in Pendle & Clitheroe

"I am proud to have helped secure the biggest ever investment into our local NHS, in May last year, when the government committed to the complete rebuild of Airedale Hospital.

"This follows the opening of the new Colne Health Centre in 2014 and substantial investments at Burnley General Hospital including the new Urgent Care Centre after the last Labour government closed our local A&E.

"If re-elected I will continue to champion our NHS."

Airedale Hospital, while serving people in the east of Pendle, is located in Steeton, West Yorkshire, in the Keighley and Ilkley constituency. It was one of the hospitals found to be made of RAAC during the recent scandal.

Labour candidate Jonathan Hinder said: "The choice at this General Election is between a Conservative government which has left the NHS on its knees, or a Labour Party that can rebuild our NHS so that it is fit for the future.

"As the next Labour MP for Pendle and Clitheroe, I will work with a Labour government to ensure that Barnoldswick is no longer left behind, and people here get the health services they deserve."

The candidates standing in Pendle & Clitheroe are: Victoria Fletcher – Reform UK; Anna Fryer - Liberal Democrats; Syed Hashmi - Workers Party of Britain; Jonathan Hinder – Labour Party; Tony Johnson - Independent; Zulfikar Khan - Independent; Lex Kristan - Green Party; Andrew Stephenson – Conservative Party; Christopher Thompson - Rejoin EU.