An outspoken community campaigner has revealed how the BNP asked her to be their candidate in Bradford's May local elections.

Audrey Raistrick told a meeting of the Greengates and Ravenscliffe Community Forum that the extremist party wrote to her on two occasions asking her to be their representative.

But the 75-year-old retired college lecturer told a meeting in the Holybrooke Early Learning Centre in Greengates yesterday that she had rejected the right-wing BNP's offer.

She said she would instead stand as an independent candidate for the vacant seat in the Eccleshill ward.

Her candidature comes after Labour ward councillor and Deputy Lord Mayor Peter Lancaster died earlier this year from cancer.

Mrs Raistrick said she made her decision after a number of people asked her to represent the area.

Mrs Raistrick, who is the forum's secretary, said: "I'm standing up for this community. The one thing that the BNP isn't going to do is frighten me off."

A BNP leaflet pushed through letterboxes on the Ravenscliffe and Greengates estates criticised the forum - which is the umbrella group for all the community associations on the estates - and Mrs Raistrick.

Mike Quiggin, from the Bradford Trades Council, who was also at the meeting, said: "Certainly the Trades Council's view is that the BNP has got no interest in the things that people on the estates are concerned about.

"They are concerned about pursuing their racist and fascist agenda and using the people in that area to that end.

"We think that it's appalling that the BNP has got a small following in that area and hope people will come to their senses and have nothing to do with them."

BNP spokesman Phil Edwards said: "Not everybody can aspire to be a BNP candidate. It needs courage and a particular sort of person and obviously she doesn't come up to the standard."