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County makes interim chief permanent

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Lancashire CC has appointed Angie Ridgwell as permanent chief executive and director of resources.

Ms Ridgwell has been in the role on an interim basis since January and was previously director general, corporate services at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

A report by Grant Thornton in August said Lancashire’s finances were at a “tipping point”. It estimated cuts were worth a projected £135m up to 2021-22, with £57m of reserves used in 2017-18 and a further £42m expected to be used in 2018-19.

Ms Ridgwell said she had been “massively impressed by the passion and commitment” of councillors and employees since joining Lancashire.

She added: “Like every other local authority, Lancashire County Council faces challenges with growing demand and reducing resources.

“Together with staff and our partners, we are working hard to ensure the council delivers strong and sustainable services and that Lancashire has a great economic future that everyone can benefit from.”

Former Lancashire chief executive Jo Turton was dismissed following a restructuring of the council’s senior management last year.

Lancashire’s cabinet had rejected the advice of James Goudie QC and approved a plan to merge Ms Turton’s role with that of the section 151 officer to create a new position of chief executive and director of resources.

Ms Turton was prevented from taking on the joint role as she was not a member of an accountancy body and has now been given three months’ notice under the terms of a compulsory redundancy approved by full council.

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