William Bethell takes over from Lady Halifax as new Pontefract Racecourse chairman

Pontefract Racecourse.
Pontefract Racecourse.

Lady Halifax has stepped down both as chair and a director of the Pontefract Park Racecourse Ltd – which runs Pontefract Racecourse – and William Bethell has been appointed as chairman in her place.

Lady Halifax joined the board at Pontefract in February 2010 at the same time as being appointed chairman.

She was a steward at Pontefract from 1982, until 2009.

Pontefract’s managing director and clerk of the course, Norman Gundill, said: “I shall be very sorry to lose Lady Halifax. She has been an ideal chairman and we have worked together very well.

“I am, nevertheless, looking forward to working with William. He has a wealth of knowledge of the industry and continues a long family association with Pontefract.

"His father Tony Bethell was a director and chairman from 1979 until 1996.”

William Bethell said: “I am delighted to have been asked by the board to take over from Lady Halifax.

“I was a steward at Pontefract for many years and have been on the board since 1997. I am looking forward to continuing the good work done by my predecessors.”
Lady Halifax has agreed to become Patron of the Racecourse. She is the first person ever to be given this honour.

After her decision was announced, Lady Halifax said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my time as chairman at Pontefract, but after 10 years in the chair I am very happy to hand over to William.

“I am honoured to have become the first ever Patron.”