WEST Yorkshire’s police and crime commissioner has spoken of the “immense honour” he has felt serving the people of Keighley and the region.

Mark Burns-Williamson’s role has come to an end, with the commissioner duties being picked-up by the new West Yorkshire mayor – who will be revealed following today's count.

He was first elected to the police and crime commissioner post in 2012 and then re-elected four years later.

“I am proud of what has been achieved,” he said.

“It has been a really varied, interesting and at times challenging role – covering community safety and support for victims and working with criminal justice, local government and many other valued community partners, as well as providing strategic policing governance and making tough decisions through austerity and other difficult times.

“I have lived and worked in West Yorkshire all my life and throughout my time as commissioner have always put the needs of West Yorkshire first.”

He said landmarks during his term had included the setting-up with partners of a sexual assault referral centre, violence reduction unit and the Anti-Trafficking and Modern Slavery Network, and the launch of the Safer Communities Fund – which has distributed money seized from criminals to more than 800 projects across the region, including many in the Keighley district.

Mr Burns-Williamson also praised the police, NHS staff and all frontline workers for their “phenomenal” efforts during the pandemic. “I absolutely want to express my sincere thanks for everything that everyone is doing to help keep our communities safe and feeling safe during such difficult times,” he added.