BURGLARS are travelling from as far as Manchester and Lancashire to target homes in Ilkley, Councillors have been told.

At a meeting of Bradford Council’s Keighley Area Committee on Thursday, Inspector Khalid Khan of the Keighley Neighbourhood Policing Team spoke about the work being done to tackle crime in the constituency over the past year.

He said that over the past year the town had attracted burglars from beyond Yorkshire.

Insp Khan said: “There are local burglars and what we call travelling burglars. I like to think we have a good handle on the local burglars, and we know who they are. But there are travelling burglars as well. In Ilkley a lot of the burglaries are committed by people who come from as far as Lancashire and Manchester. Burglars from Bradford travel there too. There are obviously some very nice homes in Ilkley, Burglars will steal cars, jewellery and other goods.

We have operations in place to tackle these burglars. Along with traffic officers we have been out as far as Rotherham to pursue burglars suspects. We’re relentless. When we do have evidence we will do all we can to arrest these suspects.”

He said that members of the public could reduce their chances of burglary by keeping doors and windows locked. He added: “Thirty five per cent of burglaries in the area were of an insecure property - with the door or window left open or unlocked. You should be able to live a comfortable life in your home and leave windows open, but unfortunately there are people who won’t hesitate to break into your house.”

Members were also given an update on the anti social issues that blighted Ilkley over the summer.

Warm weather led to a huge rise in reports of anti social behaviour and nuisance riding of scooters and quad bikes.

The town’s booming night time economy also stretched police resources, the committee was told.

Insp Khan said: “It was a hot, lovely summer, and that led to a big rise in incidents in Ilkley, which was not something I expected. The warm weather attracted a number of youngsters from outside the district. Ilkley has attractive locations like the river bank and a lot going on in the summer. The vibrant nighttime economy also attracts a lot of people.

“We had quite a few arrests made over public disorder issues, and we had to put quite a lot of additional resources into Ilkley, particularly in the evening and on weekends.

“There was anti social behaviour and an element of cannabis use as well. We’re keeping an eye on the individuals who were responsible, and we hope we can plan enough to avoid the same issues next year.”