Retro: Terry Waite free at last

Dateline: Novembe 1991 THE MAIN STORY.... The world had waited almost five years to hear the fate of Church of England envoy Terry Waite then on November 18 it happened... the British hostage held in Beirut was free, along with Scottish-born American Tom Sutherland.

Terry was flown to RAF Lyneham in Wiltshire where he was greeted by family and friends and the Archbishop of Canterbury and his predecessor, Lord Runcie whose envoy he'd been.

Minutes after Terry descended the aircraft steps at a rainy RAF Lyneham he delivered a forceful, emotional account of his imprisonment and the Christian faith which had sustained him.


Publishing tycoon Robert "Capt Bob" Maxwell was found dead in the seas off the Canary Islands hours after he went missing from his luxury yacht. A helicopter picked up his naked body and transported it to Gran Canaria where it was identified by his wife, Elizabeth.

For the first time British Rail blamed leaves on the line for delays.

Outspoken Labour councillor Mick Lyons, chairman of West Yorkshire PTA, branded private bus operators "greedy and self-centred" when they pulled out of the Metro Saverstrip scheme.

Adverts for telephone sex lines were banned by Mirror Group Newspapers because they were "unsuitable" for a family newspaper said publisher Ian Maxwell.

Health Authority research in Leeds suggested four people a day died through smoking.


The Nobel Peace Price winner, Aung San Suu Kyi was said to be critically ill on hunger strike in Burma.

Two Libyans were named as suspects for the 1988 explosion which blew Pan Am Flight 103 out of the skies over Lockerbie.

Britain agreed to unfreeze 70m of Iraqi assets so it could buy food for its people after jailed British businessman Ian Richter was freed from Abu Ghraib jail.


Leeds Labour councillor Lorna Cohen, chairman of Leeds Licensing Committee, called for brothels to be legalised and for tolerance zones where prostitutes could freely operate.

Former Tory Minister Nicholas Ridley said people should vote for anti-European candidates regardless of party.

Politicians were warned by police that the Mafia, Chinese Triads and gangs from Japan and Eastern Europe were poised to invade Britain in a massive drugs trafficking operation after European trade barriers were abolished in 1992.

West Leeds Labour MP John Battle accused Tory Environment Secretary Michael Heseltine of delaying a timetable for a clean-up of the River Aire.

China objected to the Downing Street meeting between Prime Minister John Major and Tibet's exiled spiritual leader the Dalai Lama.


Jack and Doreen Billingsby celebrated their first decade as mine hosts of The Old Star Inn in the stockbroker village of Clifford, near Wetherby, by organising a race night with a difference... maggot racing.

Crooner Ronnie Hilton – whose first hit was in 1954 with I Still Believe – took his final curtain call as a resident of the White Rose County and headed with his wife, Chris, to Eastbourne.

Brian Glover, YEP columnist, playwright and author became the latest famous Yorkshire face to open the Christmas exhibition of the British Watercolour Society at Ilkley's Kings Hall/Winter Garden complex. Others before him had included Sir Bernard Ingham, TV newscaster Philip Hayton, athlete Tessa Sanderson, swimmer Adrian Moorhouse and comic Charlie Williams.


Inflation tumbled to 3.7 per cent – its lowest in three and a half years.

Sir Christopher Hogg, chairman of Reuters, said big boardroom pay rises should be better explained to the public.

Britain's biggest food store chain, J Sainsbury, revealed recession-beating profits up almost 20 per cent.

Tycoon Mr George Moore bought Follifoot Hall, near Pannel, the former HQ of Arncliffe Holdings.

Supermarket chain William Morrison launched a right issue to raise 97.6m and said the money would be used to reduce its debt and open more stores.

The recession plunged high street clothing giant the Leeds-based Burton Group in to the red. It reported a pre-tax loss of 13.4m, meanwhile demand by food retailers for higher standards of packaging led to a surge in business for Stourton-based John Waddington.

Japanese car bosses said they wanted to buy 65 homes near their Derby plant but they all had to face the rising sun.


England drew with Poland in Warsaw and qualified for the European Cup Finals.

Former Olympic ski-jumper Eddie "the eagle" Edwards, pictured below, was declared bankrupt with debts of 119,000.


Children's TV presenter Phillip Schofield took the lead in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat while Aussie Jason Donovan took a six-week holiday.

Over 80 viewers complained to the BBC over the Michael Jackson Black and White video... some reckoned it was too violent others it was too long and boring!.

Veteran comedian Les Dawson was the Queen's favourite funny man at the Royal Variety Performance. He told the audience he wouldn't keep them long because he'd heard one couple wanted an "early night"!

How's about that then?

Sir Jimmy Savile, OBE, reached 65. He got his bus pass and promised to go and queue with the elderly folk at his local post office when his pension book arrived.

Freddie Mercury, the lead singer of rock group Queen, died of AIDS. He was 45.


The Bible outscored the British Royal Family when it came to influencing children's names. James was the top boy's name with Matthew second. Joshua, Joseph and Luke all rose in popularity while William came in at 21, Harry at 58 and Charles was 62nd. Sarah, Laura and Emma were the top girls' names.


Sarah Sordy of Mars Petcare in Birstall

Meet the team behind Yorkshire’s petfood powerhouse