Welcome to Yorkshire: Harry Potter star to fly flag for tourism

Matthew Lewis.
Matthew Lewis.
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HARRY Potter star Matthew Lewis has landed a role that gives him the perfect chance to tell the world why his native Yorkshire is just magic.

Matthew, from Horsforth in Leeds, was today unveiled as the latest recruit to tourism agency Welcome to Yorkshire’s select band of Yorkshire patrons.

They use the high profiles they enjoy in their respective fields to fly the flag for the county and its attractions both at home and abroad.

Existing patrons include the likes of cricket hero Michael Vaughan, broadcaster Sir Michael Parkinson and Star Trek favourite Sir Patrick Stewart.

And 21-year-old Matthew can’t wait to follow in their illustrious footsteps by doing his bit to promote his beloved White Rose county.

The actor, who has played boy wizard Harry Potter’s chum Neville Longbottom in seven films, said: “It’s an honour to be made an official Yorkshire patron and join such a prestigious list of people.

“Everywhere I go I always end up promoting Leeds and Yorkshire as it’s the best place in the world and you can’t keep me away for long!

“I’d like to thank the team at Welcome to Yorkshire and look forward to promoting the region.”

Welcome to Yorkshire chief executive Gary Verity said he was “delighted” to have Matthew on board.

Mr Verity told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “His talent on the big screen in the hugely successful Harry Potter films has seen him become internationally famous and we look forward to seeing him fly the flag for Yorkshire to raise the county’s profile across the world.”

Matthew, a former pupil at St Mary’s School in Menston, is already a patron for a number of local charities, including the Yorkshire Kidney Research Fund.

The Leeds United season ticket holder also finds time to work as an ambassador for national bodies such as Action for Children. His farewell outing as Neville Longbottom will come in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, the concluding part of the movie franchise and due for release in July.