SPECULATION has begun swirling about who will replace Rishi Shori after the announcement that he is standing down as both leader of Bury Council and as Radcliffe West councillor.

Bury Council has posted 'notice of a casual vacancy in the office of councillor' on its website following Mr Shori's resignation.

While no formal announcement has been made of a by-election, rumours have been circulating on social media about which candidates are expecting to stand for the seat.

Independent Cllr James Mason, representing Radcliffe First, posted on Twitter: “By-election coming up in Radcliffe West. We couldn’t have a better candidate than Mike Smith to take Rishi Shori’s seat.”

Meanwhile, former Radcliffe North candidate Jamie Walker, who lost his seat to Conservative Cllr Sam Hurst in May, has been busy leafleting the town about Radcliffe Labour policies.

Bury Conservatives posted on their Facebook page on Monday that they will be holding a "big weekend" which will involve speaking with residents across Radcliffe about "issues that matter to them and seeing how they can offer help."

On Saturday, members of Bury's Conservative group are due to visit the Woodvale Road area, following this up with door-to-door visits in and near Ringwood Avenue on Sunday.

They are also conducting a "big Radcliffe survey" online to collect views about issues affecting the town.

For a by-election to be held, two electors — anyone listed on the electoral register — of Bury Council must make a request in writing to fill the vacancy.

Under the Local Government Act, an election would be held within 35 days of the notice being received by the council.

The Bury Times has contacted Bury Council for a comment.