HUNDREDS of votes cast by customers have chosen Dementia Friendly Keighley (DFK) as the Airedale Shopping Centre's new "Charity of the year".

The organisation, which is located in the centre and supports people with dementia, is also celebrating its first birthday at Airedale this month.

Sandra Kelly, who runs the charity's drop-in centre, said she and her colleagues were delighted to have been selected.

“This is a wonderful birthday present for us,” she said. “Over the last year, our volunteers have worked tirelessly to raise awareness within the community.

"To be have been voted for by so many Keighley customers is an incredible honour and we're very grateful for their ongoing support.

“We can’t believe we're already celebrating our first anniversary. It’s certainly been a successful journey, with the highlight being a visit from Alastair Campbell, who officially opened our new drop-in centre."

Last year the shopping centre raised £5,658 for Manorlands and it hopes to be just as successful for DFK.

Steve Seymour, Airedale Shopping Centre manager, said: “We're thrilled to be working with Dementia Friendly Keighley. Since it first opened, the charity has quickly become a vital organisation to so many in the town.

"It provides a place of trust and safety for those with dementia where they benefit from a positive, friendly environment. It also provides people with the opportunity to engage with others and most importantly, it gives carers a chance to take some time out."