A 150-year-old part of Keighley's industrial heritage is set to leave the town in less than three months.

Dean Smith & Grace, which manufactures, services and repairs lathes, is to be moved to Halifax by its parent company Machine Tool Technology Group (MTTG).

Several of the firm's 17 employees are facing redundancy.

MTTG group chief executive Carl Griffiths, who lives in Silsden, confirmed the transfer but stressed the group was committed to maintaining and growing the DSG brand globally.

He said: "We are very conscious of the DSG legacy in Keighley but this move will bring all our operations together in one place band enable us to develop two recently launched DSG products more efficiently. When we bought DSG there was no drawing office operation and now we have systems engineers and a drawing office in Halifax.

"Such decisions are never easy but building a successful business sometimes involves tough decisions. We are currently in discussions about potential redundancies which will affect fewer than ten of the DSG workforce."

Steve Davison, president of Keighley Trades Union Council, said DSG, which was founded in 1865, had employed as many as 1,200 people in its heyday.

"The lathes they produced were probably the most famous in the world," he said.

"They also used to have a foundry in Lawkholme, but that closed down.

"The company lost a lot of its workers in the early to mid 1980s, which was a tragedy at the time.

"This latest news is very sad for the guys who are losing their jobs.

"Keighley once had a fantastic manufacturing tradition, but if this country is ever going to make anything again who is going to do it?"

DSG, based in leased premises in Pitt Street, was subject to a management buyout in 2005, went into administration in 2008 but was subsequently bought by Newsmith Stainless Ltd. MTTG acquired the assets of DSG in 2012.

Conservative prospective parliamentary candidate for Keighley Kris Hopkins said: "Dean Smith & Grace has a long and rich history and were once one of the largest job creators in Keighley. I would be most concerned should they leave.

"But Keighley's manufacturing base remains very strong. For example, local company Teconnex – now the biggest private sector employer in the town – has recently completed a £2 million-plus expansion and increased staff numbers to more than 400, with more new jobs expected."

Labour Party PPC John Grogan said: "Dean Smith and Grace is one of the iconic names in Keighley's engineering history, producing the best lathes in the world which were exported around the globe.

"They supplied lathes to Rolls Royce and in turn their products were referred to as the Rolls Royce of lathes.

"In recent years the company has contracted but it's loss to the area would mark a significant moment."