ILKLEY'S jobless total has risen slightly.

Latest figures from the Office of National Statistics show that last month, 1,020 people in the parliamentary constituency – which includes Keighley – were claiming unemployment benefits.

The total is 15, or 1.5 per cent, up on December.

Month-on-month figures increased across all five Bradford-district constituencies, but Ilkley's rise was the smallest.

The town's MP, Kris Hopkins, said: "It is frequently the case that the number of claimants goes up in January, after people leave seasonable jobs following the Christmas period.

"However, I'm pleased that the Keighley parliamentary constituency has shown the smallest increase district-wide.

"It is also encouraging that unemployment in Keighley and Ilkley is down by 60 compared with this time last year.

"The outlook for the UK economy continues to look bright and locally there is the prospect of many new jobs in the pipeline through further recruitment by existing employers and investment in a number of new schemes."

Across the Bradford district, there were 9,030 claimants last month – up 2.5 per cent on December.

The data includes both people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance and those claiming Universal Credit benefits principally for unemployment reasons.

But the figure was 0.7 per cent lower than in January 2016 and 26.9 per cent down on two years ago.

The Shipley constituency – which includes Burley and Menston – saw a rise last month of 20 people, or 2.2 per cent, to 940 claimants.