Councillors in Steeton, Silsden and Eastburn have joined together to give themselves greater influence over future development strategies.

The councils hope that by working together they will have a stronger voice regarding issues such as housing, employment and transport.

The three Aire Valley communities want to ensure residents’ interests are taken into account by both Bradford Council and North Yorkshire County Council. Members of Steeton-with-Eastburn Parish Council and Silsden Town Council met last month to discuss issues that affected both communities.

Discussion centred on potential effects of proposals to build thousands of homes within the parishes’ boundaries over the next few years. The two councils agreed to prepare a joint Neighbourhood Plan, a legal document that must be taken into account by larger councils when they draw up development strategies.

Steeton chairman David Mullen said: “There’s housing, employment, transport and infrastructure – everything we’ve said when commenting on every planning application.”