MEMBERS of the area’s Chamber of Commerce have voted in favour of a merger with the Bradford Chamber.

The Leeds, York & North Yorkshire Chamber will now become the West & North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce after members voted to join forces at an extraordinary general meeting.

The change will see the creation of the fifth largest chamber in the country.

As part of the merger the current chief executive of the Leeds, York & North Yorkshire chamber, Len Cruddas, will be retiring.

Sandy Needham, who moves from being chief executive of Bradford Chamber to heading up the new body, said: “We’ve taken a bold step today, but one that we’re very confident and excited about.

“The great cities of Bradford, Leeds and York and the North Yorkshire area will have top-class representation and lobbying.”