The deputy town mayor of Denholme has admitted working while claiming more than £5,000 in benefits.

Dennis Bibby, of Station Road, Denholme, pleaded guilty at Bradford Magis-trates' Court last Thursday to receiving housing benefit and council tax relief while he was employed by Marks and Spencer, in Pudsey.

The court heard how between October 2005 and May 2007 the 65-year-old had made dishonest claims of £3,890 in housing benefit and £1,196 in council tax relief.

The court was told Bibby failed to notify Bradford Council of a change of circumstances which affected his entitlement to housing benefit.

Dennis Schulman, prosecuting for Bradford Council, said Bibby had started work in October 2005 but had failed to declare it to the council.

He said Bibby had assumed wrongly that the Department for Work and Pensions would tell the council and that he had been "naïve".

In mitigation, Mohammed Alias said that Bibby had taken the job to try to get himself out of debt.

He pointed out that Bibby did a long list of charity work for his community, including working as a voluntary school governor.

Mr Alias added: "He is not proud of this conviction and it is obvious that his actions speak louder than words."

The court heard that Bibby was already in the process of paying back the money to the council. Bibby was given a conditional discharge for two years, with instructions to pay £320 court costs.

The court also issued a collection order which would allow bailiffs to go into Bibby's house and take possessions which add up £320, if he did not pay the amount.

Bibby has resigned from Denholme Town Council.

Town mayor Councillor Mike Powell said yesterday that although his colleague was not legally obliged to stand down, he had done "the honourable thing".

He added: "While in no way condoning Councillor Bibby's reported actions, I would add that he has been a very industrious and conscientious member of the council."