KEIGHLEY Town Council is setting a benchmark.

It is replacing 15 benches in Town Hall Square, at a cost of about £6,000.

And it is asking the public to suggest other spots-with-a-view where benches could be placed.

Work has begun on replacing the Town Hall Square seats, with benches made from 100 per cent recycled materials designed to reduce future maintenance costs.

The upkeep of the square is overseen by the town council’s allotments and landscapes committee.

Its chairman, Councillor Luke Maunsell, said: “Around a year ago myself and fellow councillor Mark Curtis submitted a motion to the town council voicing a desire to declare a climate emergency and to take meaningful action to help do our bit for the planet.

“The motion was passed and since then action has been taken to lower the council’s carbon footprint – including paperless meetings and recycling at the civic centre, together with other measures.

“I am proud that this commitment has extended to the committee I chair and will help to ensure that Town Hall Square remains a place to be proud of! The square is the heart of the town and my committee will always maintain it to the highest standard possible.”

Some of the benches earmarked for removal are being donated to the Lion’s Den, a Men’s Shed Association project based in the grounds of Cliffe Castle. The benches will be renovated in the coming weeks as part of a Lion’s Den project.

Allan Clark, for the Lion’s Den, said: “We are planning to manufacture a series of raised bed planters and a site has been assigned for these in the grounds of Cliffe Castle.

“We also need seating which we were going to make after the planters, but when the opportunity arose to try to incorporate a number of the benches being replaced in Town Hall Square, we sought permission to acquire some so we can repair and refurbish them as an activity for our members.”

The Lion’s Den targets – but is not exclusive to – mature men who may be suffering from mental health and wellbeing issues, loneliness or bereavement. It is a peer-to-peer support group which uses activities to engage with members.

Keighley Town Council has also launched a Seat with a View initiative and is asking people to suggest places where benches could be placed. The venture has been commissioned by the community development committee.

“We want to identify areas around Keighley that people think would be good places for a bench where you can sit and enjoy the view,” said a spokesman.

Suggestions should be emailed to, together with a couple of photos of the area if possible. Benches will be installed at chosen sites early next year.