TWO district MPs have secured a meeting with Government ministers to discuss their campaign to break away from Bradford and create a new council area.

Shipley MP Philip Davies and Keighley and Ilkley MP Robbie Moore want their constituencies to break away from Bradford Council and see a new authority formed, which they believe will better suit the needs of their constituents.

But Cllr Susan Hinchcliffe, Leader of Bradford Council, has said it is "sad" the two MPs are "spreading division and disharmony".

Speaking in Prime Minister’s Questions, Mr Davies criticised Bradford Council and called for a meeting to discuss breakaway plans.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he would arrange a meeting with the relevant Government minister.

Mr Davies said: “Shipley and Keighley constituencies too often miss out and are ignored because they are not in their city heartlands. Perhaps it is just too big an area for them to properly look after.

"I had raised the matter of the delays surrounding the feasibility study into the Shipley Eastern Bypass in Parliament with the Prime Minister. If this was a city centre project I have no doubt the council would have been quicker off the blocks and not be dragging their feet like is currently the situation.

“Breaking away from Bradford Council would mean there was a separate budget for the area and it would be spent on things we need. No longer would my constituents be treated as a cash cow raising money to be spent across other parts of the district. It would be our money to be spent in our area.

"I strongly believe my constituents would be better off being represented by its own council along with the Keighley constituency which I know feel the same.

"I am delighted the Prime Minister is arranging the meeting and look forward to seeing how this campaign can progress to the next stage.”

Keighley and Ilkley MP Robbie Moore added: “Bradford Council has failed our area on so many occasions. Enough is enough. Momentum to break away and create a new council area is gathering pace fast.

"We have managed to secure a meeting with the local government minister, Luke Hall, to discuss exploring this option further. Exciting times lay ahead.

"It is only right that residents of both the Shipley constituency and Keighley and Ilkley constituency are able to have a local council that works for them.”

Cllr Susan Hinchcliffe, Leader of Bradford Council, said: “It’s very sad for the district that at a time of national unity when the Prime Minister has called for everyone to work together to fight the pandemic, we have two Conservative MPs who are intent on spreading division and disharmony.

"It’s poor political leadership and in the end does damage to our chances of investment with Government, wherever you live in the district, whether you live in Shipley, Keighley or Bradford. Government wants to see politicians working together in a mature, grown up way and will take their money elsewhere if they feel there aren’t constructive partnerships.

"For our part we care equally about all parts of the district. Since we’ve been allowed to go out talking to residents on the doorstep again we’ve been knocking on doors in Keighley, Shipley, Bradford, rural and urban alike.

"Overwhelmingly people are relieved to be finally allowed out, albeit with restrictions and they are interested in actions, not words, to create a better world than the one we’ve had before.

"Lines on the political map may be fascinating to politicians but no one else lives their lives within lines on a map.

"Any political energy the MPs have, should be spent on securing meetings with Government ministers on investment for transport, skills and on our crumbling hospitals, not on anorak discussion about political boundaries.”