A COUNCILLOR has resigned from his role and claimed his party did not have any faith in him.

Phil Ashcroft has represented the White Horse Ward on Westhoughton Town Council for the past 12 years.

But the Conservative, who was a former Hulton ward representative on Bolton Council, has decided to step down after he began to feel that his party had lost faith in him.

It came after Mr Ashcroft was turned down when he put his name forward for two local elections.

These were the forthcoming Hulton ward by-election and the Heaton and Lostock ward during the local elections last year.

The 56-year-old, who lives in Junction Road, Deane, said: “The by-election for Hulton ward is on my doorstep so I went for selection for that and I did not get it.

“But prior to that I also went for selection for the Heaton and Lostock Ward last year and I did not get that one either.

“So I find it very difficult to represent a group of people who do not seem to have any faith in me.”

The Bolton West Conservatives decided to select the current chairman Toby Hewitt to stand for the Hulton by-election, which will take place on January 18.

Mr Ashcroft represented the ward from 2003 until the local elections in 2015 when he lost his seat to Labour’s Shafaqat Shaikh.

He said: “I do feel a bit sad because it is nothing to do with the people representing Westhoughton or the other members of Westhoughton Town Council. It is nothing to do with that, it is to do with the fact that I represent the Bolton West Conservatives on the council and I do not feel like I can represent them any more.”

Mr Ashcroft, who currently works for health insurers Western Provident Association, said he will continue to be involved with the community but did not know what capacity that would be in.

Cllr David Greenhalgh, leader of the Bolton Conservatives, said: “Phil is still very well regarded in the party but Bolton West the membership voted and decided not to pick him. He did not get the outcome he wanted and I am sad that he feels this way.”