Cheshire West and Chester Council set to appoint new interim chief executive

Cheshire West and Chester is set to appoint a new interim chief executive next week.

A meeting of full council is pencilled in for Thursday where members are recommended to approve the appointment of Delyth Curtis as the borough’s top officer on a temporary basis.

The move follows the resignation of Andrew Lewis, who is due to take up the equivalent role at Liverpool City Council.

Ms Curtis is currently deputy chief executive of health and wellbeing and NHS place director at the council, where she has been in post since 2017. She previously held a number of senior roles with Blackpool Council, finishing her time there as deputy chief executive and director of people.  She started her career in the NHS and has worked in acute hospital trusts as well as a number of primary care trusts.

Born in Cardiff but raised in Cheshire and Lancashire, after attending Leeds University she qualified in HR management. If given approval at full council, she will officially take up her post on May 22.  The process of finding a permanent chief executive to replace Mr Lewis will then begin.

The recruitment process will involve advertising for the position this month and selecting a preferred candidate in June. All councillors will then be asked to approve the appointment of the recommended candidate on July 13.

At the recent local election count, council leader Louise Gittins paid tribute to Mr Lewis. She said: “It’s Andrew Lewis’s last job as returning officer for Cheshire West and Chester and he’s led this whole election absolutely superbly, and I’d like to wish him well on his next job at Liverpool.”

Mr  Lewis had held the top officer job at Cheshire West and Chester since  2018.

Before that, he was the first managing director of the Tees Valley Combined Authority from 2016-2018 and was assistant chief executive at Newcastle City Council from 2010.

He announced earlier this year that he intended to step down to take the helm of Liverpool City Council, which has been run by a Government taskforce for the last two years after a damning inspection branded it ‘dysfunctional’.

Image: LDRS

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