ACTOR Sir Ian McKellen has left a town's civic leaders red-faced after revealing that a plaque marking his birthplace is outside the wrong house.

A blue heritage plaque has been fixed to the outside wall of 25 Scott Park Road, Burnley, since 2003.

But after visiting the site, the former Bolton School pupil says he was not born where the sign says he was.

He said: "They've gone and put the plaque on the wrong house. It's something you begin to ponder upon when you reach my age.

"Where you came from and what it's all about; where the great meaning of one's heritage lies, things like that. We did live there at one point, but I'm certain that's not where I was born. I'm trying to track down the actual house."

According to his official website, Lord of the Rings star Sir Ian was born in Burnley General Hospital at 8.30pm on May 25, 1939, and was the son of Denis Murray, a civil engineer, and Margery Lois.

But before the outbreak of World War Two in September that year the family moved to Wigan and then to Bolton.

Burnley Civic Society is now responsible for the borough's blue plaques but secretary David Smith said Burnley Council would have overseen the unveiling of plaques in 2003.

He said: "If Sir Ian wants to get in touch, we will see what we can do."