WEST Yorkshire Police has come in for criticism after its officers were used as a backdrop for Prime Minister Boris Johnson's speech on a visit to the county yesterday.

Speaking at the police's headquarters in Wakefield, newly-recruited officers stood behind Johnson as he made a speech to the media.

In the speech he promised more money for the police, and repeated his pledge to recruit 20,000 police officers around the country, but the topic soon returned to Brexit.

He criticised again Parliaments move to block No Deal, and also said he would "rather be dead in a ditch" than ask the EU for an extension beyond October 31.

Johnson added there was a need for an early General Election, despite saying earlier this week he didn't want one.

The criticism following the speech was levelled at the Prime Minister and West Yorkshire Police, saying its officers had been used as "political football" for a "Trump style photo op".

Nazir Afzal, former chief prosecutor at the CPS, said: "Mr Johnson, you don’t have to say anything, but using police officers as political football is totally out of order.

"Particularly as your Government demolished their numbers, 800+ police stations and created thousands more victims as a result.

"My family had to bury one of them. Yes, I’m angry."

Labour MP Louside Haigh added: "I think this tells us everything we need to know - police officers used as props for naked electioneering after voting to cut thousands of their colleagues.

"This is contemptible."

One officer behind Johnson had to sit down during his speech after appearing to become unwell.

Craig Grandison, vice-chair of West Yorkshire Police Federation, said: “Thank you to those who have been in touch regarding the welfare of our colleague in Wakefield.

"We are pleased to say she is ok and the federation is looking after her wellbeing.

“Today’s event was supposed to be centred on police recruitment and additional investment in the service, which is much needed.

"We are in touch with the force regarding today’s events and will be making no further comment.”

Owen West said: "Can’t believe West Yorkshire Police agreed to this.

"Especially given the damage to the force by austerity cuts which crippled the force and changed the face of our service.

"Serious error of judgement in actively supporting blatant political electioneering.

"A man and government that cut 21,000 officers gets the red carpet and politically neutral stance broken.

"Embarrassing scenes. Officers used in Trump style photo op."

John Apter, national chair of the Police Federation, said: "I am surprised police officers were used as a backdrop for a political speech in this way.

"I am sure on reflection all concerned will agree this was the wrong decision and it is disappointing the focus has been taken away from the recruitment of 20,000 police officers."