A 98-year-old’s debt of gratitude to Sir Gary Verity and Welcome to Yorkshire chauffeur – Yorkshire Post letters

From: Mrs C Hird, Bridlington.

Former Welcome to Yorkshire chief executive Sir Gary Verity.

I AM a 98-year-old lady (with failing eyesight) and I write in support of Sir Gary Verity.

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Some short while ago I rang his secretary to book a ticket for a promotion he was arranging, a luncheon at a local venue to include a speech by Barbara Taylor Bradford.

Sir Gary Verity's team helped a Bridlington senior citizen attend a talk by Barbara Taylor Bradford.

I would be travelling by local Coastliner bus and I asked if I would be able to walk from the coach stop to the venue.

The lady said it would be much too far but kindly said if I could inform her what time approximately I would be at the lane end, she would meet me in her red car and drive me to the hall. This she did, all went well, the lunch was very good and the speech excellent, as Barbara always is.

Judtih Donovan is the former chair of Yorkshire Tourist Board.

On making arrangements 
for the journey home, I was told by Sir Gary’s secretary/driver that they would drive me all the way back to my house in Bridlington.

A very kind gesture and one that I will never ever forget.

From: Judith Donovan CBE, Kirkby Malzeard, Ripon.

FORMER Welcome to Yorkshire communications director Dee Marshall refers to their predecessor organisation, the Yorkshire Tourist Board, ‘which many felt had lost its way’ (The Yorkshire Post, July 19).

I had the honour to be the chair of YTB from 2005 to 2008 and I am puzzled by that statement. YTB was a membership organisation with the highest percentage of tourism businesses in membership of any region, and the only one where every local authority was a paying member. And we ran it on a fraction of the budget that WTY had!

In 2008 we had the great honour of winning and hosting the Bollywood Awards which brought several hundred thousand visitors into Yorkshire from around the world and where the final awards ceremony from the Sheffield Arena was seen by a worldwide TV audience of over 600 million.

If that is ‘losing its way’, I wonder what constitutes success?

From: Tim Bradshaw, Slaithwaite.

THE Welcome to Yorkshire expenses inquiry confirms that monies given to an unsupervised company, which in its defence has brought an impressive amount of money to the area, was run by a set of “managers and executives” who spent the money in a manner they thought was acceptable.

Image, availability and self importance comes to mind, rightly or wrongly – traits which seem to be the normal scenario for various overpaid charity executives who think they are worthy of their financial remuneration.

Shamed by child hunger

From: Joyce Patterson, Sawley, Ripon.

I AM just eating a good breakfast and reading Jayne Dowle’s article regarding hungry holidays (The Yorkshire Post, July 18). What has our society come to and what can we do?

My sister lives in Bournemouth, a quite affluent part, and this summer her church is providing packed lunches every day for all the children at the affiliated junior school who receive free school meals and volunteers from the church are doing this. My sister was very surprised (and is going to be very busy helping) to hear so many children in the area were in need.

We have come so far in society in lots of ways, but who would have thought when we watched a man walking on the moon 50 years ago, and relived it again this week, that we would have so many children going hungry in our in this day and age. We seem to be back-pedalling.

Hats off to Bettys

From: Kate Dale, Helperby, York.

AT last! Something beginning with B that we can all agree on! Bettys, that great Yorkshire institution, now celebrating 100 years of true customer service, exemplary quality and standards and something to be really proud of. Isn’t that what we all really want at the moment? Something to be proud of? Something to lift us all up?

Hats off to Bettys for remaining true to Frederick Belmont’s vision without compromising on quality, training and standards. Perhaps others could learn from their business model? And isn’t less sometimes better than more?