EVEN THOUGH Bettys, and Taylors of Harrogate, remain much-reputed global brands which personify the very best of Yorkshire fine food and fare, they still owe much of their appeal to Lesley Wild who is stepping down as head of the board of directors after over 40 years working for the family business.
Together with her husband Jonathan who was granted the freedom of Harrogate when he retired as chief executive in 2012, they looked to the past to find the magic ingredients that had made Bettys so synonymous with excellence – and far beyond Yorkshire. “Our chocolate, our European cakes and biscuits, our high levels of service.
By looking back, we found a way forward,” she once said. From a childhood in Pocklington helping her mother with home baking, Mrs Wild, who became the face behind the brand, will leave this institution in the safe hands – and her reputation assured as one of this county’s most significant entrepreneurs. It’s some accolade.