A SHEPLEY woman is celebrating winning a year's free council tax.
Clare Bradley was the handed the freebie - worth nearly £1,000 - after a Kirklees Council draw.
Everyone with a clear council tax account balance at the end of March was entered into the draw.
Miss Bentley said: "The winning letter came as a complete surprise. I thought it was a joke at first - I am really pleased."
Clr Paul Battye, the council's Cabinet member for administration and business, responsible for the revenues and benefits service, drew the winning name.
Clr Battye also announced that, for the year 2004/2005, the revenues and benefits service had collected 95.9% of the year's due council tax.
This follows last year's big improvement and is an extra 1.2% up on last year's result.
He said: "This year, Kirklees Council has collected a higher percentage of the council tax than ever before. It is a tremendous achievement and it ensures that the council tax scheme is as fair as it can be, as we collect as much as we can from everyone who should pay the tax.
"We aim to improve our collection yet again this forthcoming year by continuing to vigorously pursue non-payers, and encourage those who pay, to pay regularly by direct debit.
"This helps to ensure that as much money as possible is collected by the cheapest method possible."