A campaign has been launched to honour a Bingley-born astronomer by renaming the town’s bypass after him.

Councillor John Pennington (Con, Bingley) has requested Bradford Council changes the name of the road between Cottingley and Crossflatts to Sir Fred Hoyle Way, in memory of the Bradford scientist who opposed the Big Bang theory in favour of the Steady State theory, which suggested the universe had always existed.

He also became an acclaimed author of science and science fiction and was awarded an honorary degree from Bradford University in 1977. He died in 2001, aged 86.

Councillor John Pennington said: “I don’t like unnamed roads and I think it is nice that when we name them it stimulates the question of why we named them in such a way.

“In this case Sir Fred Hoyle is such an esteemed scientist it will bring back the memory of what he did.”

Coun Pennington said although Sir Fred is recognised in certain circles he wanted the wider public to learn of his work.

He said: “He started from very humble beginnings and he made his name internationally. It goes to prove anyone can do it.”

A spokesman for Bradford Council confirmed it had received a request from Coun Pennington for a name change.

The matter is scheduled to be discussed by Shipley Area Planning Panel at a meeting on January 20.

Coun Pennington is a member of the panel and will stand aside and allow the rest of the group to make the decision.

He said: “I like to think they will support this idea.”

He has also received support from fellow councillors Robin Owens (Con, Bingley) and David Heseltine (Con, Bingley).

Coun Pennington said: “It all of a sudden fell into place and we realised what a sensible idea it was. As long as he is remembered in our area I am happy.”