A PETITION opposing the planned closure of Keighley tip has been presented at a full meeting of Bradford Council – despite the local authority initially rejecting it.

Campaigners had accused the council of trying to "silence the voices" of townspeople when it refused the petition, on the grounds that it didn't contain signatures.

But it went before the council yesterday (January 24).

Resident Laura Kelly put forward the petition, calling for the Royd Ings Avenue household waste recycling centre – which is facing the axe under Bradford Council's budget proposals – to remain open.

Keighley Conservative MP Robbie Moore had slammed the council's initial decision as "an absolute disgrace".

He also presented the petition, backed by over 7,000 residents, to Parliament this week.

"Residents in Keighley are deeply concerned about the consequences the closure of the site could have on the town – including pressure on other tips in the area and a severe increase in fly-tipping," he said.

"It is high time that Bradford Council listened to people in Keighley and U-turned on these disastrous plans."

The council said this week that around 500 online comments had been submitted over the proposed closure of the tip as part of its budget consultation.

The figure accounts for a large chunk of the total submissions made during the public consultation period, which ends today (January 25).

Councillor Sarah Ferriby, the council's portfolio holder for healthy people and places, says: "I want to thank so many people in Keighley for having their say. That’s what the consultation is there for and it’s what local democracy is all about.

"We will carefully consider all the feedback before any decision is made."

Former Keighley MP John Grogan, who will contest the seat again for Labour at the next general election, says he is "increasingly hopeful" that the site will be saved.

"I have had extensive discussions with senior councillors who have been listening carefully to the arguments made," he added.

"I think the point that there is a real danger of increased fly-tipping in the town if the closure goes ahead is proving particularly powerful. Keighley’s Labour councillors have also been making strong representations. I am increasingly hopeful that together we can prevent the closure of the site. I understand detailed proposals are now being looked at which would generate around £150,000 of alternative savings from within the waste budget."

Councillors voted for the petition to be presented to a meeting of the council’s executive.