MORE than 900 people have had their say on a package of projects designed to rejuvenate Keighley and bolster its economic growth.

The public was invited to give its views on 36 schemes, ranging from a one-way traffic system on Cavendish Street to new skills and training hubs, a health and wellbeing centre and a digital programme aimed at producing better and faster internet connections.

Consultation began just before Christmas on the proposals, which form part of Keighley’s bid for up to £25 million from the Government Towns Fund.

Now the Keighley Town Deal Board – which includes businesses, the MP, stakeholder organisations and representatives from the voluntary and community sectors, Bradford Council and Keighley Town Council – will decide which initiatives should go forward for submission at the end of this month.

At a meeting of Bradford Council's executive, the work on the so-called Keighley Town Investment Plan was welcomed.

But concerns were voiced about the limited timescales involved.

Worth Valley councillor Rebecca Poulsen, leader of the Conservative group on the council, said some groups in Keighley had only found out about the initiative at a very late stage of the process.

She added: "A number of groups only found out about the fund being available a few weeks before the closing date and had a difficult time putting together a bid for funding.

"There is concern about whether this was a level playing field for smaller groups. These groups are not big organisations, they are doing the bids in their spare time on an evening. They have not had an awful lot of support.

“I hope that if these projects progress, we work closer with the groups.”

Councillor Alex Ross-Shaw – the executive member for regeneration, transport and environment – accepted that the timescale was tight.

But he added: "It is not that any particular group is being left out. It was a compromised timescale, but we have had some fantastic feedback as well.”

The executive heard that over 900 people had taken part in the Keighley consultation, with 500 people participating in a similar consultation for Shipley.