THE council is wasting taxpayers' cash to promote a pagan website selling witchcraft information packs and cauldrons, claims a Tory parliamentary candidate.

Julien Foster, of Abbotts Park Road, Leyton, criticised Waltham Forest Council for including a link to the Pagan Federation on its official website under the links section headed Beliefs and Faith.

Paganism is an ancestral religion based on the worship of nature, the supernatural and various deities. Many believe its beliefs surrounding magic are nonsense.

The Pagan Federation is an organisation that represents pagan interests and groups in Britain. It holds events across the country and promotes the ancient religion nationwide.

Mr Foster, who is the prospective Tory parliamentary candidate for Leyton and Wanstead, believes money used to add such a link to the website should be used on more important services.

He said: "This is political correctness gone mad. The council has provided information about the great religions on its website and obviously someone thought that, in order to be inclusive, information about paganism should be included.

"Council taxpayers paid for someone on the council with time on their hands to enter this information on its website. I think this is a grotesque waste of taxpayers' money.

"There are people living in a council-owned block of flats not far from where I live where the lights in the stairwell are not working.

"No doubt they can read all about the Pagan Federation while they wait for the council to replace the light bulbs."

The council this week defended its decision to add the link alongside other religions on its official website.

A spokeswoman said: "The paganism site is just one of the many faith sites that can be reached from the web site.

"The council tries to include a wide range of information on the site to make it relevant, useful and interesting to our residents, who between them share diverse beliefs and interests."