A LONGSTANDING Liberal Democrat councillor has resigned to teach in India, triggering a by-election.

Whitefoot ward’s Councillor Pete Pattisson will lead a school for underprivileged children in Mumbai, India.

A parliamentary candidate in 2010, the former Deptford Green teacher spent the last two years at Blackfen School for Girls, Bexley.

He said: "It's been a privilege to serve residents of Whitefoot ward as their local councillor for the past five years and the local Lib Dem team has achieved a huge amount in the community.

“Now I'm excited by a new opportunity to make a difference to the lives of some of India's most disadvantaged children."

Lib Dems have chosen Janet Hurst as their candidate for the by-election on October 11. 

Born and bred in Lewisham, she is a regular attendee at St Mark’s Church, founder of the Friends of the Woodland Walk and, until recently, a primary school governor.