HOUSE burglaries across the Shipley Parliamentary constituency which includes Menston and Burley-in-Wharfedale have risen by almost 50 per cent year-on-year, new figures have shown.

The number of recorded burglary dwellings rose by 47 per cent from 500 in 2015 to 735 in 2016, while the total number of crimes in the constituency rose by 17 per cent, up from 5,479 to 6,465.

Thefts from vehicles rose by 25 per cent and criminal damage by 13 per cent.

But shoplifting decreased by 23 per cent, while there was no change in the number of robberies in the constituency.

The statistics cover ten criminal offences: serious violence, assault with injury, burglary dwelling, burglary other, criminal damage, making off, robbery, shoplifting, theft from vehicles and theft of vehicles.

Shipley MP Philip Davies said: the figures were “concerning”.

“I am not surprised by them as I have been taking up concerns of my constituents with the police for a long time,” he said.

“There is nothing worse than being a victim of crime.

“I am an absolute hardliner on crime. We need more resources for the police and harsher sentences for those who are caught breaking the law.”

The figures were also broken down into Council electoral wards. Wharfedale reported the largest percentage rise of 35 per cent, with an increase of 101 recorded offences, from 285 in 2015 to 386 in 2016, with the largest increases in burglary dwelling and theft from a motor vehicle.

Councillor Gerry Barker (Con, Wharfedale) said: “Police are financially stretched at the moment and can’t be everywhere all of the time.

“People need to take greater steps to protect themselves as well.”

Chief Inspector Julie Deacon said: “There has been an increase in crime across the ward. A proportion of this is due to the effect of changes in recording practices over the last few years and we remain committed to reducing crime, re-offending and anti-social behaviour, protecting the vulnerable and supporting victims and witnesses.

“In order to tackle these increases in crime, we are carrying out a specific operations which involves deploying additional officers in both plain and marked police cars to certain areas across the wards, which we have made 14 arrests for burglary offences since January.

“We are also utilising the Force’s roads policing teams to assist our district officers in identifying and targeting suspects.”

The report, compiled by the Shipley Neighbourhood Policing Team, was discussed at Shipley Area Committee, on Wednesday, February 15.