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Shared chief given go-ahead

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Councillors in two authorities split by county boundaries have formally agreed to share a senior management team in a drive to save more than £1m a year.

Full council meetings at Cherwell DC in Oxfordshire and South Northamptonshire Council agreed this week to merge their most senior posts and create a new 15-strong management team.

The proposed new structure includes one chief executive, three directors, eight heads of service, and three senior managers and is set to save Cherwell £3.4m and South Northamptonshire £1.8m over the next five years.

Their announcement comes a week after another pair of councils, Islington and Camden LBCs in London, announced that they had decided against a similar arrangement because of the cost and risk involved.

Cherwell leader Barry Wood (Con) said: “We are confident that the decision to forge ahead with plans to form a shared management team is the correct one and one that will enable us to begin to address the financial situation we currently face.”

South Northamptonshire leader Mary Clarke (Con) added that the approach “is the right way to reduce our costs whilst continuing to focus on service delivery”.

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