Sedgefield borough residents will be receiving copies of the Sedgefield District Labour Party manifesto over the next few days, ahead of the local government elections on Thursday, May 1.

Councillor Brian Stephens, leader of the Sedgefield District Labour Party, who has compiled the manifesto, said: "This is the first manifesto that we have ever fought on, as previously we have operated a leaflet system.

"In the manifesto we will explain to the people of the borough the way that the Sedgefield District Labour Party hopes to work and also advise them of our plans for the next four years."

He said: "This document has been paid for by the Labour group members to explain how new governance came in.

"This is the first time any council manifesto of this magnitude has been issued in this country.

"We are very proud of it and we hope that people will read it and realise their council is being professionally run. Running a council these days is big business and has to be treated properly."

This year's elections will be conduced by a postal ballot for the first time. Registered electors will be sent postal ballot papers to be returned to the council offices in Spennymoor no later than noon on May 1.