You have just booked your castle stay and now you are planning your transport for when you and your party land in the UK; it's not just the mode of transport that is important, but the driver. If you are unfamiliar with the a new country and would like a driver with local knowledge then Howard Smelt-Webb a former Police Officer in the beautiful county of North Yorkshire, 'God's Own Country', is probably the man for the job. In 2008, with his wife Lisa, they ran a farmhouse bed and breakfast near Masham, on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales.
Howard picks up the story...'We had some guests in from Norfolk, who had never seen the famous Yorkshire dry stone walls. They had a free day and wanted to go touring the Dales. I devised them a route with morning coffee and lunch stops built in, together with various things to see and do. They came back that evening raving about what a fantastic day they had had and suggested that when I left the Police Service, I should start a touring company...the seed was sewn!'
Fast forward to February 2012...Howard left the Police, after completing thirty years' service and set about starting up his own company. This evolved into what is now The Yorkshire Chauffeur Company.
The big benefit of tapping into Howard and his team’s knowledge is that you get to see places many people miss out on. You are driven in luxury and comfort, seeing the places you want to see, when you want to see them. Stop off at a market town for two minutes or two hours - the choice is yours! Tours can be for half a day or a full day. Howard's service is totally flexible and can be tailored to meet your own requirements. It’s all about you! Although based in Yorkshire, operating throughout the UK, The Yorkshire Chauffeur Company can transport you anywhere, allowing you to do anything you wish.
Howard continues...'We offer a bespoke chauffeuring service throughout Yorkshire and the UK. We principally drive Range Rovers. Our brand is all about Yorkshire and the countryside; wearing country tweed, our drivers aim to give guests that traditional, authentic Yorkshire experience. The Range Rovers fit perfectly into that. '
Although The Yorkshire Chauffeur Company offers a range of services, it is their chauffeur-guided tours of Yorkshire that have really taken off.
Howard explains...'Yorkshire is one of the most beautiful and popular counties in the country. Be it the Yorkshire Dales, North York Moors, the spectacular coastline, stylish Harrogate, rural market towns, country houses or the historic city of York - Yorkshire has a lot to offer. Guests are chauffeur driven in the luxury and comfort of one of our Range Rovers; the elevated position allows guests to see over walls and hedges, adding to the enjoyment of the tour. We stop off for morning coffee, lunch or afternoon tea at suitable locations, ranging from luxury castle hotels to village gastro pubs, from local farm shops through to Michelin star restaurants.' All stop-off points are carefully selected by Howard himself.
The Yorkshire Chauffeur Company has grown over the last four years; Howard now leads an experienced team of drivers, two of whom have a royal protection background and have driven HM The Queen, together with a number of Heads of State from around the world. So you will be in very good hands!
When Howard is asked what the highlight has been over the last four years he is quick to reply...'Being the official chauffeurs for Yorkshire's Grand Départ of the 2014 Tour de France was very exciting. We had the Tour de France Director with us, together with other races officials and travelled with the cyclists around the UK and across to France. Yorkshire really embraced the race; it was fantastic. I'll never forget that week!'
Howard receives compliments all the time and here a just a few of them:
We just wanted to say a big thank you for your brilliant service on our wedding day at Castle Howard back in May. Your whole team was wonderful and we loved the cars! Thank you! - Tara Bader
Had a fabulous tour with Howard Smelt-Webb despite the weather. Fantastic vehicle and local knowledge, would recommend this tour. Thank you Howard, you made our short Yorkshire break special. - Richard Weale
If you are keen to add thoughtful touches to your wedding and minimise the stress of family members / guests driving or finding and paying for taxis then I cannot recommend the Yorkshire Chauffeur Company highly enough. They were absolutely worth the money and when my siblings get married I shall certainly be insisting they are there.
The Range Rovers & drivers looked extremely smart and we certainly didn’t need to worry about not being able to get to church in the winter with them being 4 wheel drive!
Without a doubt I cannot more highly recommend Howard and his team for a stress-free day and a little something that tells your guests you have really thought of every detail! Worth their weight in gold and I cannot recommend more! - Katie Tipping
I want to thank you so much for such a dreamy two day tour in June. You were absolutely wonderful to ride with. Your knowledge of the Yorkshire area and your tailoring the tour to my wishes made this the dreamiest of dream tours for me. I am still "floating" months later.
Your suggestions for lunch at the Star Inn, tea at Swinton Park, market day in Helmsley, Castle Howard, Bolton Castle, and all the wonderful countryside you drove us through were literally a dream come true for me, and my companion.
Your sweetness with us as we continually asked you to stop for photo opportunities was a Godsend. Every time I have a cup of the Yorkshire tea you gave me, I thank you again! I look forward to another of your tours in the future. - Laurie Stidham
Below are a couple of Yorkshire properties that also may be of interest.