Week Ahead: Welcome to Yorkshire board to meet amid CEO James Mason resignation

Welcome to Yorkshire board meeting after half its members quit, big plans for the World Cup and a chance to see a meteor shower. John Blow looks at the week ahead.

Crunch meeting

Troubled tourism agency Welcome to Yorkshire will conduct its first board meeting since chief executive, James Mason, announced his resignation last month.

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Outgoing CEO of Welcome to Yorkshire, James Mason, pictured on the Grove in Ilkley. Picture: Bruce Rollinson.

Piece Hall boss Nicky Chance-Thompson resigned and was followed by Richard Flint, former CEO of Sky Betting and Gaming and former chair of the CBI in Yorkshire and Humber, Abbi Ollive, head of marketing and sales at Castle Howard, and Sarah Tahamtani, an employment lawyer at Clarion.

Mr Mason is leaving the organisation on Friday, the day after this week’s board meeting, in the midst of an internal row about the handling of a unspecified complaint made against him. He said last month there was “no link” between the investigation into the complaint – details of which have not been made public by Welcome to Yorkshire – and his decision to leave and has also denied any wrongdoing.

The meeting on Thursday will take place from 5.30pm.

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MPs are to examine whether public money committed to considering a UK and Ireland bid to host the 2030 World Cup represents good value for the taxpayer.

The cross-party Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) committee will question funding body UK Sport on Tuesday about the £2.8million of Government money allocated to a feasibility study on whether to bid for the tournament.

The committee will also look at the cost to the BBC of securing the rights to such events.

It comes after the England men’s team went all the way to the final of Euro 2020, which took place a year late, losing to Italy at Wembley.

The witnesses called for the committee include UK Sport chief operating officer Simon Morton and the director of BBC Sport Barbara Slater.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson pledged the £2.8m towards the feasibility study earlier this year and said at the time: “We are very keen to bring football home in 2030. I do think it’s the right place.

“It’s the home of football, it’s the right time. It will be an absolutely wonderful thing for the country.”

FIFA is expected to outline the bidding regulations for the 2030 World Cup in the second quarter of next year.

World football’s governing body is currently consulting over plans for biennial World Cups, starting from 2026.

The plans have been fiercely opposed by European confederation UEFA. Its president, Aleksander Ceferin, has said European countries could boycott the tournament if the plans go forward.

The Football Association is reportedly interested in bidding for Euro 2028, but it is understood its priority remains the 2030 feasibility study.

Meteor shower

Stargazers will be hoping the clouds part as the best time to watch the Orionid meteor shower comes.

The space spectacle’s peak should be reached on the night between Thursday and Friday.

According to the EarthSky space website (www.earthsky.org), Orionid meteors fly each year between about October 2 to November 7.

“That’s when Earth is passing through the stream of debris left behind by Comet Halley, the parent comet of the Orionid shower,” it reports.

However, the peak is scheduled to come just after the Hunter’s Moon, meaning the sky could filled with light, which is not conducive to seeing the shower.