David Parkin on farewell to a banking success, a TV switch off and why gangsters get beaten by Pokemon

JUST to confirm, the photograph above isn’t of Theresa May’s new Cabinet, or even a recreation of the meeting of the five families from The Godfather.

It was taken this week in the boardroom of Yorkshire Bank’s headquarters on Merrion Way in Leeds at a retirement lunch for David Maybury, the head of the bank’s business and personal banking operations in Leeds.

After 23 years with Yorkshire Bank, David has decided to take early retirement and head off to do other things.

Immediate aims are playing more golf at Otley Golf Club, walking in the Yorkshire countryside and spending time with his grandchild, with another soon to be on the way.

I’ve known him for about 16 of those years and dealt with him and his team while I was at the Yorkshire Post. Then when we launched TheBusinessDesk.com in 2007, it was Yorkshire Bank that backed us via the Small Firms Loan Guarantee Scheme – probably the last one out of the door before the credit crunch hit.

And more recently it is David and his team that have supported my new business COPA. And not just with just banking, it was David who secured athletics legend Steve Cram, a Yorkshire Bank ambassador, to speak at the Lord’s Taverners Balloon Debate that we organised in May.

So I wasn’t going to miss a chance to mark the end of an era at Yorkshire Bank and wish David a fond farewell.

Hosted by Yorkshire Bank chairman Richard Gregory, the guests round the table were a mix of customers, advisers and referrers that David has dealt with over the last two decades plus.

The views from the fourth floor boardroom are impressive, taking in in the neighbouring Leeds Arena and in the distance the art deco tower of the Parkinson Building at the University of Leeds.

And the food served at the lunch, provided by Michelin starred The Box Tree restaurant in Ilkley, matched the quality of the guests and conversation in the room.

Guests took the opportunity to reminisce about when they first met David Maybury and some of the memorable deals and meetings with him during his YB career.

And then the conversation turned to the future.

David set the tone by describing his time over the last 20-odd years as “fascinating”.

“Yorkshire and Leeds has undoubtedly changed for the better. With new challenges on the horizon the next few years look just as interesting,” he told us.

Whilst everyone around the table agreed, what was really positive was their keenness to play a role in that future.

Uncertainty posed by the recent EU Referendum vote for Brexit and the role of Yorkshire and the Leeds City Region in regional devolution and the wider growth agenda in the North, appear to have galvanised opinions rather than jaded outlooks.

There was a positivity and good humour that you only get when you put a lot of successful people in the same room.

I felt privileged to be part of it. I told them I wanted to get the photo above to capture the moment for posterity.

What I didn’t tell them is that I’m also hoping that appearing in the picture gives me the benefit of reflected glory.


FOOTBALL fans are funny fish.

They enjoy the travails of their team almost as much as the successes, but if there is one thing they enjoy more, it is the challenges of rival teams.

I received three emails this week from football fans in the business community pointing out, with considerable pleasure, that my team, Derby County, had been described as ‘Derby City’ in a report about one of the team’s players getting fined for failing to declare money earned when he was on loan at another club.

Well it was only a piffling £45,000, easy to overlook when you come to submit your tax return.

I felt the same way when I forgot to declare 45p that I found down the back of my sofa.

Anyway, I suppose if you are not a football fan then it is easy to make a mistake with a team’s name.

But as I pointed out to one of my correspondents, Sheffield Wednesday fan and Leeds lawyer Richard Larking, that would be like his team being called Sheffield Tuesday.


I READ this week that the night that Iceland played England in Euro 2016 around 150,000 viewers from their nation tuned in to watch their team’s unlikely triumph on television.

Given around a tenth of the country’s 300,000 population were in France supporting them at the tournament, that’s an incredible figure who watched the match on TV.

Apparently the Icelandic TV channels that didn’t show the game attracted an audience of just 298 viewers between them.

Mind you, those kind of numbers would be enviable to Made in Leeds and the other tinpot regional TV stations around the country.


I FELT old this week when a member of the bar staff at The Pit bar and restaurant in Leeds asked if my fellow film club members and I had enjoyed the movie we’d just watched in their private room, dubbed The Bunker.

She asked us what film we had watched.

“It was The Untouchables, a modern classic,” said one of my companions.

“I’ve never heard of it,” she replied.

“It was made in 1987, it is one of the classic gangster films,” he continued.

“I was born in 1991,” she said, “I’ve never seen a gangster film, what are they about?”

Rather than outlining the genre in great detail, I decided to cut my losses and asked her whether she’d found any Pokemon recently.

Have a great weekend.

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