COMMUNITY leaders have voiced their shock after the body of a man was found at the scene of a car fire at a beauty spot.

Yesterday, police revealed that the man had been found dead by officers investigating the blaze in Penistone Hill Country Park, above Haworth, early on Monday morning.

The death is not thought to be suspicious, but inquiries are under way to establish the circumstances.

Officers were called to the country park – a popular beauty spot and a scene for filming of last year’s BBC Bronte biopic To Walk Invisible – at 7.28am on Monday.

A spokesman for West Yorkshire Police said: “We can confirm the body of a man was found at the scene of a car fire at Penistone Hill Country Park in Haworth on Monday.

“The man is believed to be in his 50s.

“His death is not thought to be suspicious at this time, although enquiries are continuing today to establish the circumstances.

“Anyone with information which may assist this inquiry is asked to contact police on 101, quoting log reference 246 of October 9.”

No details of the man’s identity have been released yet.

Police officers remained at the scene of the discovery for much of Monday.

A cordon was put in place and the burned out car removed later that afternoon.

Responding to the news, Keighley MP John Grogan said: “I am sure village residents will be shocked by the circumstances of this tragic death.

“Like everyone else I’m waiting for the police to tell us what more they can at this stage of their investigations.”

Speaking yesterday afternoon, Worth Valley Ward councillor Rebecca Poulsen said she had not yet been informed by the police of the death, but found out when it was reported in the local media.

She said: “It is very sad and shocking.

“I’ll be asking the police for an update.

“I don’t know the circumstances surrounding this or whether the man was local.

“But it is upsetting from a community perspective, as it’s not something that normally happens here.

“We’ll have to wait and see what comes out of the police investigations, but my thoughts go out to this man’s family and to anyone else who may have known him.”

Cllr Poulsen said any trouble in the Penistone Hill area was usually restricted to thefts of valuables from cars or occasional instances of flytipping.

Also reacting to the reports of the man’s death, fellow Worth Valley councillor Glen Miller said: “I was saddened to hear of this.

“My thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of this gentleman.”

Councillor Russell Brown, also of Worth Valley ward, said: “Obviously this is extremely sad for this man and his family.

“I can’t really say much else until the police have reached their conclusions and let us know what they think, but of course any death of this kind is tragic.”

He said car fires had once been a very common occurrence on Penistone Hill, but added that his had been less of a problem in recent times.

People also took to social media to express their shock, including a Facebook user who described the incident as “terrible.”