A PARTY fighting for independence for the North of England says it plans to stand in the Hartlepool by-election following the resignation of MP Mike Hill.

Various reports on Twitter said the MP had resigned with immediate effect.

His resignation comes amid an ongoing investigation, he was due to face an employment tribunal later this year on claims of sexual harassment.

This means a by-election will be held in Hartlepool, a seat long-held by Labour, marking the first test of Sir Keir Starmer’s leadership since taking over from Jeremy Corbyn last year.

The new Northern Independence Party demanding independence for the North of England hope to gain the seat.

In a statement the party said: "The Northern Independence Party plans to stand a candidate in the forthcoming Hartlepool by-election. For too long the North has been taken for granted by Westminster elites. 

"We believe that now is the time for the people of the North to break with a political system that has impoverished us for generations. The Labour Party has never represented the real interests of the North.

"We reject the idea that London-based lawyer Sir Keir Starmer knows the first thing about life in Hartlepool. We will win this seat in Hartlepool, for Hartlepool. This is the beginning of a new North."