Stephen Parnaby OBE and Paul Grace have decided to step down as directors from the Welcome to Yorkshire Board with immediate effect, to pursue new roles within the Yorkshire business community that will place significant demands on their time. As a result the Welcome to Yorkshire Board will begin a process to appoint successors in due course.
Both have been exemplary assets to Welcome to Yorkshire and their commitment and contribution during their respective time with the tourism organisation has been greatly appreciated by the team.
Welcome to Yorkshire wish both board directors best wishes for the future and can confirm they both leave on very positive terms.
Former East Riding Council Leader Stephen Parnaby OBE joined Welcome to Yorkshire’s Board of Directors in December 2018 and has made a significant contribution during his time, with his business and local authority expertise, as well as offering an important voice for East Yorkshire in all discussions.
Stephen Parnaby OBE said “It is with great regret that I have made the decision to resign as a Director of Welcome to Yorkshire. Along with my other commitments I have recently taken over as Chairman of The Humber Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) which is facing several challenges in addressing recovery and emerging new geographical boundaries in the region. Unfortunately I am unable to give the time required to Welcome to Yorkshire and felt it only fair to all concerned to step down. I have had a relatively short period as a director but have been involved with Welcome to Yorkshire since its inception. There is no doubt it has a remarkable record of increasing the visitor economy and has put Yorkshire on the map as a destination. I believe that as the country emerges from COVID-19 more people will be looking for holidays in the UK and Yorkshire is well placed to maximise the benefits. I wish Welcome to Yorkshire well in helping deliver those and have every faith it will achieve that going forward. The organisation has an experienced chair and an excellent chief executive, along with a dedicated team and board of directors, who all have the interest of Yorkshire and its potential to have a bright future.“
RedSky Director Paul Grace joined Welcome to Yorkshire’s Board of Directors in 2020 and he has been instrumental in supporting Welcome to Yorkshire navigate some difficult and delicate financial matters. In a short space of time he has made a significant impact.
Paul Grace explained, “It is with great regret that I’ve had to step away from the board of Welcome To Yorkshire for business reasons. Over the past 6 months I have become involved in two exciting new business ventures which are absorbing so much of my time that I’ve been unable to dedicate sufficient resources to the wider board and Welcome To Yorkshire’s turnaround strategy. Having got to know the Board and Chief Executive James Mason over recent months, I have absolute faith that the new leadership team will pay a key and vital part in the recovery of Yorkshire’s tourism industry post-COVID-19. I wish them the best of luck and I am pleased to confirm that I have offered to continue supporting the organisation as an unpaid consultant.”
Welcome to Yorkshire Chair Peter Box said “Welcome to Yorkshire would like to thank Paul Grace and Stephen Parnaby for their valuable time and contribution as part of the Welcome to Yorkshire Board of Directors. The Board have accepted both their resignations and fully understand their reasons for stepping down, relating to their individual business commitments and personal plans going forward. We appreciate their positive thoughts regarding the important future of Welcome to Yorkshire and its continued crucial impact on the county’s £9bn tourism economy.”
Welcome to Yorkshire Chief Executive James Mason said “Since joining Welcome to Yorkshire in January it has been a pleasure to meet and work with both men. They are both highly regarded in the business world and respected across Yorkshire. Their contribution to the organisation and with the Board has been very much appreciated by all and whilst this is a good bye from the Board, they will remain as key allies in their new roles for WTY to work alongside.’