West Yorkshire Police have recorded big rises in the number of firearms and knives being seized.
Figures released under the Freedom of Information Act revealed that 819 firearms were seized last year – a rise of almost 80% compared with the 458 seized in 2014.
The force said that the 819 firearms were linked to a total of 330 offences.
Figures also revealed the number of seized bladed instruments – which includes knives – had also risen, from 1,158 in 2014 to 1,725 last year, a rise of nearly 50%.
The 1,725 seized knives had been linked to 1,419 recorded offences.
West Yorkshire Police said that the definition of ‘firearm’ included ammunition, revolvers, shotguns, rifles and pistols.
The term ‘bladed instrument’ can include bayonets, daggers, butterfly knives, craft knives, flick knives and lock knives.
A police spokesman said recorded knife crime had risen by 36% nationally between 2013/14 and 2016/17.
“However, there is evidence that around half of these extra offences are due to improved recording across the same period. Hospital admissions for assault by sharp object show an increase of only 18%.”
The spokesman added: “Offences involving firearms increased by 31% nationally between 2013/14 and 2016/17 and here too there is evidence that part, but not all of the increase is due to specific improvements in the recording of firearms offences.”
Last year saw more than 200 firearms, knives and swords taken off the streets of West Yorkshire after police staged a ‘weapons surrender’ in November.
A large number of shotguns were handed in including three pump-action shotguns.
The release of the figures comes amid public concern in Kirklees about the use of guns on the streets. In recent months there have been firearms incidents in Dalton, Birkby, Moldgreen, Sheepridge, Rawthorpe and elsewhere. Police have brought charges against several people.
In April Faisal Younis, 31, of Ravensthorpe, Dewsbury, was jailed for 14 years after admitting possessing firearms including a MAC-10 sub-machine gun with a magazine containing 20 9mm bullets. Police also found a sawn-off shotgun in a flat he had been renting and using as a storage facility.