A Horwich councillor is no longer a part of the hyper-local party for the area after an agreement to part ways.

Horwich and Blackrod First announced the agreement with Ryan Bamforth in a post on social media this week.

Cllr Bamforth, an Armed Forces veteran who became a part of the hyper-local party several years ago and who became a councillor on Bolton Council around a year ago, is to continue in the council chamber as an independent.

Horwich and Blackrod First said the agreement was "mutual" and "natural".

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The post on social media said: "This decision underscores the understanding all relationships can come to a natural conclusion over time. We extend our gratitude to Cllr Bamforth for his hard work during his time with our group.

"His dedication has been evident in accomplishments that have benefited the residents of Horwich, Blackrod and the borough and, in particular, his dedication to our veterans is second to none and it has seen strides towards raising the borough's commitment to the Armed Forces Covenant Gold Award."

Cllr Bamforth's departure leaves Horwich and Blackrod First level with Farnworth and Kearsley First with five seats in the council chamber behind Labour, the Conservative and the Lib Dems.

The hyper-local party is no longer in control of all of the seats across the wards of Horwich North and Horwich South & Blackrod as it was at the time of the local election around a month ago.

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The post on social media said: "Cllr Bamforth's departure marks the end of a valued chapter and we wish him all the best in his future endeavours. We are confident his dedication will continue to drive positive outcomes in whichever path he chooses to pursue.

"The Horwich and Blackrod First Independent Party remains committed to its mission of serving the community with dedication. We look forward to continuing our work and achieving further milestones for the benefit of our residents."

The Bolton News asked Cllr Bamforth for a comment.

This article was written by Jack Tooth. To contact him, email jack.tooth@newsquest.co.uk or follow @JTRTooth on Twitter.