Disqualified councillor Eleanor Pinfold has announced that her town hall days are far from over.

Miss Pinfold was disqualified for 12 months after facing a councillors' watchdog and a byelection for her seat has been scheduled for the end of February.

But in a statement made exclusively to the Sutton Guardian Miss Pinfold said that health problems permitting - she would be back.

"I apologise to the residents of my ward that I shall no longer be able to represent their interests in the way I should have wished. I hope that when my health is fully recovered I will be able to return to my duties as councillor," she said.

A Standards Board hearing in December ruled that she had brought Sutton Council into disrepute, and disrespected police and council officers. The board berated her for upsetting a police officer by referring to him only by his surname "Shadbolt" and for accusing council planning officers of racial bias.

Speaking about the hearing Miss Pinfold said: "I admit that I and my mode of self expression may be considered somewhat old-school'. I am, by habit and inclination, a direct and forthright person who imposes high standards on herself and others."

She said that she would be attending a diversity awareness course after the board found her actions could be interpreted as racist, although she denied that this was the case.

She also criticised other Conservative councillors who she felt did not stand by her during the hearing and said she was disappointed her membership of Sutton, Cheam and Worcester Park Conservative Association was in question.

Councillor Paul Scully, leader of the Conservatives at the council, said: "I have nothing to do with that association but I think some members felt she had brought the party into disrepute."

The byelection is on Thursday, February 28. The Conservative candidate to replace Miss Pinfold is Jonathan Pritchard. and the Lib Dem hopeful is Wendy Mathys.

Frank Day is standing for UKIP.