Leeds & West Yorkshire

West Yorkshire council reverses ban on filming meetings

Members of public and police outside Keighley Town Hall
Image caption Eleven people were escorted out of a meeting in July by police

A council which called the police after members of the public tried to film a meeting has voted "in principle" to reverse the ban.

Keighley Town Council were accused of having "lost the plot" by Communities Secretary Eric Pickles after it ejected 11 people for filming a meeting in July.

The council said it was developing "protocols" to permit filming.

Protesters handed in a petition calling for a lifting of the ban.

In a statement, the council said: "The council voted in principle to allow filming, which will be permitted once safeguards are in place to protect the vulnerable and strike a balance between personal privacy and public access."


Elizabeth Mitchell, 65, was one of those escorted from the public gallery in July.

She said the decision was "a victory" for the campaigners, who had gathered more than 1,500 signatures on a petition calling on the authority to allow filming.

However, Mrs Mitchell said she had "reservations" about the council's proposed protocols.

"One is that you have to ask for permission seven days before the meeting," she said.

"Some meetings only have three days' notice.

"The protocols could actually prevent the public from filming."

After the police intervention in July, Mr Pickles posted on Twitter: "#keighleytowncouncil seems to have lost the plot. A good council is one open to public scrutiny."

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