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Kingston upon Thames wants a finance chief to drive improvement, says Suzanne Simmons-Lewis...
Kingston upon Thames wants a finance chief to drive improvement, says Suzanne Simmons-Lewis

Kingston upon Thames LBC is looking for a strategic director of finance to lead the council's financial management and planning, as well as taking a lead role in delivering some of Kingston's major strategic projects.

Chief executive Bruce McDonald explains: 'The finance directorate works well, we've got a history of robust and prudent financial planning so it's a good base.

'We are looking for someone who is a strategic leader and wants to make a contribution to the strategic direction of the council beyond the financial management role.'

The strategic finance director will work closely with the chief executive and other members of the four-strong corporate development team on a number of strategic projects.

This includes the Changing Kingston Choosing Our Future programme, a plan for the next five years which aims to make sure the council is planning adequately for the future.

Mr McDonald says: 'The programme is about making sure we've got the clearest and widest picture of our strategic context so that we are very well placed for the future. Democratic innovation and neighbourhoods are very much part of this.'

He adds: 'Kingston is number one for retail outside the West End of London and we are looking at how we plan for the future through our K+20 project, which makes sure that Kingston will meet people's future needs and expectations.

'This is a big project that is being managed corporately and the strategic director of finance will be part of the leadership team driving that.'

The new director will need to be a strategic thinker, have an innovative and entrepreneurial approach with a proven track record of delivery.

Mr McDonald says: 'He/she will be joining a small team in a very influential role, so we are looking for someone who wants to shape strategic thinking in a council which is high performing and ambitious. We are a three-star council.'

The position includes responsibility as the s151 officer, oversees a gross budget of£365m and has the direct management of a six-strong senior finance team.

The royal borough has good transport connections and is more diverse than its neighbouring councils, having the largest Korean population in western Europe.

Facts and figures



Males 71,987

Females 75,286

Aged 0 to 15 17.9%

Aged 16 to 64 68.8%

Aged 65 and over13.3%

Born in the UK 80.34%


Percentage of people aged 16-74

Employed 45.8%

Self-employed 9.7%

Unemployed 2.5%

Student 11.0%

Retired 9.8%

Looking after family 6.5%

Sick/disabled 2.5%

Other 2.6%

Ethnic groups

White British84.4%

Mixed race2.2%

Asian or Asian British7.7%

Black or black British 1.5%

Other ethnic group3.9%

Average house price (£)

Detached 558,141

Semidetached 321,546

Terraced 264,847

Flat/maisonette 207,350

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