Council appoints interim chief executive
THE COUNCIL of the Isles of Scilly has appointed an acting head of paid services and interim chief executive.
Barry Keel, who was chief executive of Plymouth City Council between 2005 and 2012, is said to have had a distinguished career in local government.
He takes the island job on a six-month consultancy basis and temporarily fills the vacancy created by the early retirement of former chief executive Philip Hygate.
A council statement said Mr Keel's principal objective would be to evaluate the current structures and processes of the authority following detailed consultations with councillors, staff and partners.
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Mr Keel said: "The Isles of Scilly are a very special place in the South West and I feel very privileged to have been asked to help support this unitary authority in dealing with the very difficult times that local government faces.
"We are all having to closely examine the ways in which we have done things in the past and come up with new and more efficient ways of doing them in the future. This is not an easy task at times of increasing demand for services and declining budgets."
He hoped his past experience and knowledge could help the islands' council to do this.
"I very much look forward to working with all the community, councillors and staff," he added.
Mr Keel was appointed chief executive officer for Plymouth City Council in 2005 when it was one of the worst performing councils in the country. This followed a successful eight-year period as chief executive of Darlington – a new unitary authority in the North East that had risen to become an "excellent" council under the Government's performance measures. At Plymouth, he worked with the council to build a successful new team. Performance improved consistently in all service areas and the council was awarded the "Best Achieving Council of the Year" award in 2010.