A COUNCILLOR has switched her party allegiance to make a run for Parliament Cllr Julie Pattison has announced her decision to migrate from Farnworth and Kearsley First to Bolton for Change/Reform UK.

She will now contest her Kearsley seat on Bolton Council in May under her new allegiance.

Her choice has been influenced by her desire to stand for MP in the next General Election, where she wants to “fight social justice at a national level,” and will do so under the combined banners of her new parties.

Cllr Pattison said: “I’ve not been happy for two years to be honest with you.

“We have no power at local level and there’s no will to change that. We don’t actually change anything.

“I strongly believe there should be a real third alternative at local and at national level who will fight for reform and social change. I want to make a difference for years to come, not just be reactive.”

Farnworth and Kearsley First leader, Paul Sanders, added: “Farnworth and Kearsley First and Cllr Pattison have parted company on good personal terms.

“But Julie’s decision to join a different type of politics, and to focus on wider national issues, are completely her own.

“Farnworth and Kearsley First Party will continue to focus purely on the betterment of Kearsley and Farnworth and passionately representing our proud communities.”

Trevor Jones, the leader of Bolton for Change and Reform UK Bolton and Bury co-ordinator, said: “We are absolutely delighted to announce Cllr Julie Pattison has joined us at Reform UK and Bolton for Change.

“We have admired Julie’s hard work, commitment and dedication to her community in Kearsley since she became a councillor in 2018.

“We have watched Julie work tirelessly throughout the Bolton borough over the last four years in her role as a councillor.”

Although the next scheduled General Election is a couple of years away, Cllr Pattison took this opportunity to take aim at Bolton South East’s current MP, Yasmin Quershi She added: “Having worked in Bolton South East for many years, Yasmin has never worked and never represented the people.

“We need another voice for them and to represent them and no one else seems to want to do it so I will. It’s not enough to keep moaning.”

But Bolton Labour leader, Cllr Nick Peel, said: “We have always said there is no such a thing as an Independent.

“Cllr Julie Pattison, elected as a Farnworth and Kearsley First Party councillor, has defected to Reform UK, a right-wing group of disaffected Brexiters, who can’t move on.

“The most shocking thing about this is that a joint statement from FKF states that this move will help Julie ‘fight social injustice’. Reform UK stands for anything but social justice.”