Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Mayors on abolishing chief executives

  • Comment

LGC talks to the elected mayors of Watford, Torbay, Hackney, Hartlepool and Newham, to get their opinions on whether mayors should be able to abolish the position of chief executive within their councils.

That way madness lies.

Councils need both managerial and political leadership.

To suggest the two can be conflated into one is to understand neither.


Mayor Dorothy Thornhill (Lib Dem), Watford Borough Council


A mayor should do the hiring/ firing but then leave the officers to manage the council.

Politicians should decide the “what” and the officers should do the “how”.


Mayor Nick Bye (Con), Torbay Council


It’s bonkers.

In the case of some councils, you are talking about running an organisation with turnovers of £1bn.

The best person to represent the local people and come up with the local vision will not necessarily be the best person to run the council machine.

Mayor Jules Pipe (Lab), Hackney LBC


The idea is potentially a recipe for disaster - we should leave management to the professionals.

I don’t know how many mayors have the required experience to run a council but I don’t think it would be that many, and I don’t think many mayors would want to take over the chief executive’s role anyway.

Mayor Stuart Drummond (Ind), Hartlepool Borough Council


There are two totally different jobs here and to misunderstand this is what we would expect from a Conservative spokesperson.

The mayor is the community leader and should not be trying to manage the organisation too.

Mayor Sir Robin Wales (Lab), Newham LBC

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.