A LABOUR councillor who has represented Keighley West ward for more than three and a half years was not selected to defend the same seat.

Instead, Cllr Cath Bacon will be contesting Keighley Central ward in local elections this spring, where she will be up against sitting Conservative councillor Zafar Ali.

Cllr Bacon’s current seat in Keighley West will be contested by a new Labour candidate – Julie Lintern.

Cllr Bacon said: “My campaign launch is this coming Saturday (Jan 19) at 11am at Bob Cryer House, in Devonshire Street.

“I’ll be talking about my plans for the ward, then there will be a short canvassing session.

“I’m keen to encourage more women to enter politics. Keighley West is a safer ward than Keighley Central, and I’ve more experience than Julie Lintern, so we’ve more chance of adding another woman councillor with me standing in Central rather than in West ward.

“I’m excited about standing against the Conservative Lord Mayor and will be mounting a vigorous challenge.

“West ward will be heavily contested, as historically it has been a swing seat.”

Cllr Bacon is Bradford Council’s anti poverty champion and works with Bradford District Credit Union.

She is an organiser for the trade union Unison and before that was a nurse bank administrator at Airedale Hospital.

She is chairman of the customer panel and a tenant board member at Manningham Housing.

She said: “While there are many people who quite happily rub along together in Keighley there’s a lot of casual racism too.

“I want to get people to work together to make Keighley a safer, cleaner, nicer place to live and work.”

Miss Lintern, who lives in Keighley West, is the manager at Central Hall in Alice Street. She has worked for Community Action Bradford & District for seven years.

She previously worked for Age UK Bradford and District and was responsible for setting up Bradford and District Older People’s Alliance.

“As someone who lives in Keighley West I share a lot of the concerns that residents there have,” she said.

“These include an apparent surge in crime, along with speeding and dangerous driving and drugs being dropped off from cars.

“The drug dealing which happens all over our communities is another form of antisocial behaviour which upsets a lot of people.

“If I’m elected these are all areas I’d like to tackle to make the ward a better place in which to live.”