New Welcome to Yorkshire chair appointed

New Welcome to Yorkshire chair appointed

The leader of Wakefield Council has been named as the new chair of Welcome to Yorkshire.

Keith Stewart stood down as interim chair, and as a director, earlier this week after the North and West Yorkshire Business Rates Pool has made the decision to invest £1m in the organisation.

Cllr Peter Box chaired the West Yorkshire Combined Authority from 2014 to 2017 and now chairs its investment committee. 

He is a member of the Leeds City Regions Leader’s Board and the Leeds City Region Local Enterprise Partnership and the WYCA Transport Authority.

Box is also currently chair of the Key Cities Group, which aims to provide cities with more opportunities to boost the economic prosperity of the country.

He said: "I am extremely passionate about our county and all it has to offer and am happy to take this opportunity to build on the remarkable success that Welcome to Yorkshire has achieved, and more importantly regain public confidence in its future.

"There is no doubt that recent events have undermined Welcome to Yorkshire’s achievements and I am absolutely clear that we will be doing things very differently as the organisation becomes as open and transparent as possible.

"There is agreement amongst the county’s leaders that we need to continue to market Yorkshire as a great destination. It is my intention that Welcome to Yorkshire now starts a new chapter doing what it does best with a new focus on honesty, transparency and integrity and I look forward to leading this."

Sir Gary Verity resigned as chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire in March on health grounds. The tourism body also revealed that concerns had been raised in relation to his behaviour towards staff and his expenses.