A prospective Labour councillor has been suspended following revelations he co-hosted a vile “comedy” podcast.

Daniel Cowan, who had been selected by Labour to stand in May’s local elections for Blenheim Park ward in Leigh, is being investigated by the party over his involvement in the Goonersphere Podcast.

The obscene podcast, which was publicly available until February, contains racial, homophobic and Misogynist material. A compilation video of the most offensive content has since been published on Vimeo and branded “potty-mouthed sexism, racism and bestiality”. In one item a host announces a welcome to “our token brown friend”.

The site, which also contained references to sexual activity with the elderly has been reported to police by Southend Conservatives.

However, Mr Cowan defended the site - and confirmed he has been suspended.

He said: “At this moment I’m not a candidate of Blenheim, not until this is investigated. It was a comedy podcast. Not everyone shares the same sense of humour.

“Some people might find it offensive and distressing and I apologise, but the podcast came with a heavy disclaimer and people listened at their peril.

“This has been highly edited. There was more than 100 hours of content. Jokes references to the elderly, these types of things came with a lot of context.

“Is it crude? Yes. Is it offensive? Yes. But no more so than content of programmes which you regularly hear on Channel 4.”

John Lamb, leader of Southend Council, said: “I have heard the podcast and it is absolutely and totally disgusting. It is terrible that young people might hear that foul language. It has been forwarded to police. It’s utterly vile.”

Julian Ware-Lane, Labour councillor for Milton ward, said: “I am aware of this. I have no idea about the provenance of it how old it is but clearly it is something that needs to be looked at.

“I am interested in hearing his side of it. Everyone has the right to defend themselves but it requires further investigation.”

Essex Police confirmed there had been a complaint.