Welcome to Yorkshire owed £3m to creditors, say liquidators
Last updated Nov 8, 2023
Welcome to Yorkshire

Failed tourism body Welcome to Yorkshire owed £3m to creditors, according to the latest liquidator report.

The organisation was placed into administration in March 2022 after officials blamed the impact of covid and the “task of securing sufficient funding”.

A report by Armstrong Watson, which was appointed liquidator in August last year, showed that it owed £3 million to unsecured creditors.

A previous administrator’s report from April 2022 had initially estimated Welcome to Yorkshire would owe £1.8 million to 67 creditors.

Among them is North Yorkshire Council, which is due £1.3 million in relation to the North Yorkshire Pension Fund.

The Stray Ferret has approached the council to ask whether it is still pursuing the money and if it expects a repayment from liquidators. However, we had not received a response by the time of publication.

Armstrong Watson said in its report that it was unable to confirm what payment would be made to creditors at this stage.

It said:

“I am currently in the process of reviewing and agreeing unsecured creditors’ claims as there will be sufficient funds to pay a dividend.

“Unfortunately, at this stage I cannot confirm the level of the dividend payable as this is contingent upon agreeing both secondary preferential and unsecured creditor claims.”

Meanwhile, staff claims totalling £9,570 have been repaid in full.

A sum of £296,000 owed to HMRC is also expected to be paid in full, but liquidators are continuing discussions with the body.

Keith Tordoff, who is running for independent mayor of York and North Yorkshire, said the loss of the brand was “a massive failure”.

He said:

“The loss of the Welcome to Yorkshire brand and of course the invested monies is a massive failure by some members of the North Yorkshire Council who were either on the board of Welcome to Yorkshire or those authorising the unsecured loans.

“The taxpayers deserve better and those councillors on North Yorkshire who were involved should consider their position.”

The move comes after administrators sold the tourism body’s assets and website last year.

Yorkshire Dales business, Silicon Dales, purchased Yorkshire.com, its social media accounts and the rights to the Tour de Yorkshire.

North Yorkshire Council had initially bid for the assets, but was outbid by the private firm.

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