From Labour Oldham to Tory Westminster – A new Chief Executive for Westminster

The ‘West End Extra’ reports;

“A “RISING star” of local government is set to be appointed as the new head of Westminster City Council next week.

Charlie Parker, who is chief executive of Oldham, will be heading south to take over from Mike More when he steps down next year.

He will be formally appointed next week when councillors make a final decision on the appointment, but Mr Parker has come out on top after a “rigorous recruitment process”.

The council trumpeted their new appointment this week, praising his “national reputation as a leader in transforming organisations, driving major improvements to services and attracting millions of pounds of new investment”.

It goes on to say that the 52-year-old, who has been at Oldham for five years, has brought “an estimated £500million of investment into the town while introducing innovative service improvements and finding efficiencies of £140million”.

As head of Labour-run Oldham, Mr Parker is expected to write to chancellor George Osborne to protest against attempts to cut their annual budget by £5million.

Mr Parker’s salary has yet to be confirmed, but it is expected to be in line with Mr More, who earns £200,000 a year before bonuses. He currently earns £177,000 at Oldham.

The chief executive’s salary has been questioned over the past few years as Westminster made multi-million-pound spending cuts. When Mr More’s retirement was announced earlier this year Labour group leader Paul Dimoldenberg called for a review of the chief executive’s salary before his replacement was selected.

Council leader Philippa Roe said she was “delighted” Mr Parker had been selected, adding: “He is without question a rising star in the world of local government and has an unrivalled track record of delivering impressive results.

“I am confident that his talent and decisive leadership will steward us effectively through a period of continued financial challenge.”

Cllr Dimoldenberg said: “We are looking forward to working with Charlie. We have heard good reports about him from Labour councillors in Oldham which is a great one-nation Labour council.

“We hope that he can bring a bit of northern good sense to Westminster.”

Mr Parker said: “This is a tremendous opportunity to lead one of the top local authorities in England and it is a real privilege to have been offered the post of chief executive.”

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