Kirkburton Parish Council has taken action to help address the cost-of-living crisis and has donated £1,500 to The Welcome Centre Food Bank in Huddersfield.

A debate on the impact of rising prices on household budgets was initiated by Green Party parish councillor Robert Barraclough (above) who warned of “hidden” poverty even in apparently affluent areas.

“People think of the Kirkburton Parish as a ‘well off’ area but poverty can be hidden with some people getting by on low fixed incomes particularly pensioners,” he said.

“We also have community organisations that have been hit hard by the pandemic which limited their opportunity to raise funds and now they face the possibility of higher fees for room hire because of the massive hike in energy bills.

“To tackle these problems we have made a donation of £1,500 to The Welcome Centre who are the largest food bank in our area and asked them to engage with the many villages that make up the Kirkburton Parish.

“We have also encouraged community organisations that have been hit with big room hire costs to apply to the Parish Council for a grant to help deal with these extra costs.”

Clr Andrew Cooper (above), a Kirkburton parish councillor and Kirklees councillor for Newsome, added: “We are also asking people managing community buildings to apply for funding to improve the energy efficiency of their buildings.

“Whether it is insulation or solar panels or improvements to lighting all these things can help reduce energy use in buildings.

“It is good for finances and the environment. Parish Councils don’t have huge budgets like Kirklees Council but we do make good use of the funds we have even if it is in a small way.”

Kirkburton Parish Council covers villages including Kirkburton, Kirkheaton, Lepton, Shelley, Flockton, Whitley Upper, Grange Moor, Shepley, Highburton, Thurstonland and Farnley Tyas.

Details of Kirkburton Parish Council grant schemes can be found on the Kirkburton Parish Council website