VOTERS in Burnley, Pendle and Rossendale will go to the polls next month in elections which could change the political colours of the area.

In Burnley, seats in 15 wards are up for grabs, with some of the area's most senior councillors facing a battle to keep their positions within the town hall.

Among those up for re-election is Stuart Caddy, Labour leader of Burnley Council, and his Lib Dem opponent, Gordon Birtwistle.

The authority's finance chief, Coun Peter Kenyon, is also standing for Labour in Queensgate, while mayor Roger Frost is standing for the Lib Dems in Briercliffe.

In two wards, Brunshaw and Bank Hall, two seats are being contested.

Of Burnley's 43 councillors, 20 are Labour, 11 are Lib Dem, two are Independent, four are Conservative and six are BNP.

Only the Lib Dems and Labour are fighting all the seats available.

In Pendle, the Lib Dems have a strong hold over the borough, with 29 of the council's 48 seats. The Tories have 11 and Labour seven, while one seat, in Reedley, is currently vacant.

But that could change with 18 seats up for election.

Reedley is one of two wards where two seats are available, the other being Vivary Bridge ward.

Most wards will be contested by the Lib Dems, Tories and Labour, although the BNP is once again making an attempt to get into Pendle.

They have seven candidates, including two for the Vivary ward seats.

In Rossendale, seats in 13 wards are being contested. The current political make-up of the borough is 22 Conservative, 10 Labour, two Lib Dem councillors and one independent.

Among those standing is current mayor Jeffrey Cheetham, standing in Eden ward for the Conservative Party.