Mr Lloyd, Durham CC’s chief, was chosen by Cambridgeshire’s appointments panel (LGC, 6 November) but withdrew after then leader Shona Johnstone (Con) telephoned him and suggested she was unhappy with the choice.
Ms Johnstone resigned after opposition councillors reported her to the Standards Board for England. At the time, she admitted the call was “inappropriate”, but said she was “driven to get the best candidate”.
Cambridgeshire reopened talks with Mr Lloyd after former leader Keith Walters (Con) returned as acting leader.
In the meantime, the government announced that Durham and its seven districts will be merged into a unitary council.
Chief executives of the new unitaries will be chosen in open competition.
Durham leader Albert Nugent (Lab) said uncertainty over appointments made it understandable that Mr Lloyd had accepted the offer.
Mr Lloyd said while there were differences between Durham and Cambridgeshire, they had similar funding pressures.