A HOST of community groups across Keighley and the surrounding area are sharing in a £128,000 funding boost from the Co-op.

Groups in Silsden, Glusburn, Riddlesden, Harden, Oakworth, Denholme and Oxenhope were among those to benefit from the retail company’s Community Fund.

Customers nominated the groups – which cater for all ages – and donated a percentage of money from their purchases of Co-op goods to the fund.

The Co-op said the money was being shared by 33 organisations, all of whom were making a real difference to communities throughout the region.

The biggest payout has gone to the Pied Piper Preschool in Silsden, which has received almost £13,000. Other beneficiaries include Keighley and Airedale Cancer Support, Phoenix Special School and Dementia Friendly Keighley.

Staff from Pied Piper, a not-for-profit pre-school group, joined Co-op staff and customers in the Silsden store to receive the money.

Pied Piper spokesman Jane Hitchcock said: “We are a community not-for-profit pre-school offering high-quality early education and care for children from two to four years old.

“The pre-school would like to extend their gratitude to Silsden Co-op and all its customers for their incredible support.”

The local grants: £6,764, Kildwick CE VC Primary School; £3,088, Keighley and Airedale Cancer Support; £5,545, Why Don't We; £5,904, 2nd Bradford North Scout Group; £5,125, 2nd Riddlesden Scouts; £2,303, Oxenhope Pre-School; £2,517, Friends of Phoenix Special School; £1,672, Enlighten the Children; £2,510, Throstle Nest Riding for the Disabled Group; £5,513, St Michael & All Angels Church, Cottingley; £4,455, Oakworth Community Trust; £2,768, Dementia Friendly Keighley exercise class; £2,689, Sue Ryder Manorlands hospice; £1,658, Queensbury Community Programme; £6,753, 3rd Keighley (Steeton & Silsden) Scout Group; £6,529, Bradford Nightstop, £2,332, 11th Keighley (Cullingworth) Scout Group; £5,993, Aire Rivers Trust; £2,342, Gargrave Playground Association;

£2,205, Gargrave Heritage Group; £2,460, Cullingworth Village Hall; £7,242, Glusburn Community & Arts Centre; £2,269, Harden Pre-school; £4,201, Oakworth Methodist Church; £3,129, Denholme Youth Café; £2,316, Wilsden Village Hall; £1,683, Queensbury Support Centre; £2,162, Keighley & Worth Valley Railway Preservation Society; £3,090, 1st Denholme Scout Group; £12,975, Pied Piper Pre-School; £2,887, Thornton and Allerton Community Association; £2,159, Threshfield Primary School; £2,913, Thornton 60th Bradford North Scout Group.

This is the latest round of pay-outs from the fund, generated by more than 195,000 Co-op members in West Yorkshire, and means overall the Co-op has invested £260,000 in 109 groups in Keighley since the membership scheme launched in September 2016.

Co-op members receive a five per cent reward for themselves with a further one per cent going to local causes when they buy own-brand products. The members have a say in how the money is allocated, and are encouraged to select the organisations they wish to support online.

Rebecca Birkbeck, Director of Community Engagement at the Co-op, said: “Since the launch of the local community fund our members have helped 12,000 organisations to make a positive difference in their neighbourhoods, and in the last 12 months alone we have invested £19m in local causes.

“The fund is now supporting a wide variety of local organisations, from village halls and support groups to education providers and neighbourhood watch schemes, all of which are helping to make Keighley a better, happier, and healthier place to live.”

The Co-op has 4.65 million active members, including 1,800,000 recruited since the new scheme began on 21 September 2016, and over one million have already chosen which local group they want to support.