KEIGHLEY businesses turned out in force for a major careers showcase event at the town's college.

The initiaitve was staged as part of Keighley's involvement in the Healthy High Streets campaign, which aims to create new jobs and slash the number of empty shops.

Twenty businesses were represented at the event, at the Leeds City College campus in Bradford Road.

The day-long venture was organised by the college, Keighley Town Centre Association (KTCA) and the four national companies leading the campaign – the Co-op, Boots, Marks & Spencer and Santander.

A spokesman said: "One of the primary objectives of Healthy High Streets is to create 3,000 jobs across the 100 participating towns in the next three years.

"Having a presence at events such as this provides business leaders with an opportunity to talk to young people about careers, as well as to engage with them about local initiatives focused on helping to create a vibrant high street.

"A priority for businesses is to work alongside schools, young people and the education sector to address the skills shortage.

"Representatives from each of the companies which participated were able to talk about their respective roles, the qualifications required, progression opportunities and how to apply for everything from part-time jobs during their period in further education to apprenticeships and graduate programmes."

Steve Round, operations manager for Co-operative Food, said he found the event hugely beneficial.

"It was great to work with the college," he added.

"Young people are the future workforce and what better way for them to find out about careers than face-to-face with business owners and employees from small to large retailers in the town."

Also present was Graham Benn, who runs DIY Solutions in Cavendish Street and is vice-chairman of KTCA.

"This was a terrific opportunity for businesses in Keighley and the Healthy High Streets campaign team to work together to inform and educate our young people about the opportunities available to them in the area," he said.