Shoppers in Bradford appear to refute the findings of a study which found families in Yorkshire spend more on going out than they do on a weekly food shop.

In a straw poll of customers at Five Lane Ends, Bradford, yesterday many told the Telegraph & Argus they “couldn’t afford” recreational activities despite a report by the Office of National Statistics showing that people in the region are spending the biggest chunk of their weekly budget, £57.20, on culture and leisure.

The findings, based on a study of 1,490 households in Yorkshire between 2009-12, found the second biggest expense for families was transport, at £54 a week.

That was followed by housing, fuel and power, with people spending £53.20 a week, followed by food and alcoholic drinks, at £47.10.

The report shows Yorkshire has the second lowest average weekly household expenditure of all regions in England at £410.10 – compared with the country’s average of £477.50.

The area has the second lowest expenditure across the country for clothing and footwear at £18.90, compared to the England average of £21.40, and also spends the lowest on communication, at £11.10.

Nationally, spending increased for the second year in a row and the 2011 average expenditure is the highest recorded by the ONS’s annual Family Spending report series.

The biggest costs were taken up by transport, which rose to £65.70 per week, up 80p from the previous year.

Recreation and culture took up the next highest chunk of families’ spending, costing £63.90 a week on average.

This included a £2-a-week increase on spending on recreational services, including cinema tickets, leisure classes and admission to sporting events, taking the cost to £19.80.

Wrose woman Vivien Jones said: "I’m a restaurant manager so I eat all my food there, which helps me save on my food bill. I think spending more on recreation would be possible if you have children, because children’s activities can be expensive."