What is the Authority

Legal Status

The West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Authority is a statutory Local Authority with corporate status and was originally established as the West Yorkshire Fire and Civil Defence Authority on 1 April 1986 under the Local Government Act 1985. Its statutory name was changed on 1 April 2005 and reflects changed and wider responsibilities imposed under the Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004 and the Civil Contingencies Act 2004.

Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004 (Opens in a new window) (external link, opens in new window)
Civil Contingencies Act 2004 (Opens in a new window) (external link, opens in new window)


The Authority is a Category One responder under the Civil Contingencies Act. Its primary functions are prescribed by the Fire and Rescue Services Act under which the Authority is charged with the provision, training and equipping of a Fire and Rescue Service capable of undertaking the following functions:

1. Fire Prevention
2. Fire Safety
3. Firefighting and Rescue
4. Road Traffic Collision extrication and rescue
5. Other emergency rescue activities including responding to flooding and terrorist attack
6. Special discretionary services (these may be subject to charging)

The Authority

There are 22 members appointed in accordance with a statutory formula by the five constituent authorities within West Yorkshire, i.e. Bradford, Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds and Wakefield Councils. The appointments are made in proportion to the population levels within the five district council areas and in accordance with political balance rules. Members are ordinarily appointed at each annual Council meeting for a year at a time but their term of office can be extended or reduced by the appointing Council.

With effect from July 2014 the political balance of the Authority is as follows:

Political partyNumber of members
Liberal Democrat