A small hedgehog was discovered on fire in Bolton this afternoon.

Cllr David Wilkinson was out campaigning in Westhoughton when he made the alarming discovery.

Along with a fellow party member he saw a woman who had come across the animal on Chequerbent Green at around 4.30pm this afternoon.

They found it had been set on fire.

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Cllr Wilkinson, who said he could fit the animal into the palm of his hand, took it to the vets where it is being assessed.

He spoke about his horror of what he had witnesses.

He said: "It looked like someone had used a lighter on it.

"We took it to the vets as the hedgehog place was closed.

"We took it to Pikes Moor Vet.

"They had a look at it and will see what can be done.

"It was a horrific injury.

"I was first elected to the council in 1984 and I have seen worse than this campaigning sadly.

"I have seen swans killed.

"It was awful though, if I could get my hands on who did this they would probably be signing soprano."