FAR-right candidates are standing for election for the first time in North-West Durham.

The British National Party has put up candidates in Consett and Stanley for the local government elections for Derwentside District Council which are taking place on May 1.

BNP regional organiser Kevin Scott said the move is the boldest yet for the party.

He said: "This is the first time we have been able to put forward candidates in these areas, though we have steadily gained support in other parts of the region.

"We are not expecting too much the first time we stand in these wards, we just hope to secure a respectable vote this time around, which we can build on in the future.

"We want people to understand our viewpoints and give us a fair crack of the whip."

Peter Norman Hopper for the BNP is one of four candidates contesting three seats in the Blackhill ward in Consett.

In Stanley, Malcolm Jefferson will fight one of three seats in the Havannah ward, where there are four other candidates.

The party is standing elsewhere in the county. Two BNP candidates are also contesting seats on Wear Valley District Council, and two are standing for Sedgefield Borough Council.