Agenda item

Appointment to the post of Joint Chief Executive


Councillors were reminded that, at its extraordinary meeting held on 6 July 2021, the Council had agreed to pursue options for collaboration with Waverley Borough Council, namely the appointment of a single management team.  At its meeting on 28 July 2021, the Council had agreed the job description, person specification and the appointment of a Joint Appointments Committee to carry out the recruitment and make recommendations to both Councils for approval.


Following a rigorous two-day process, which included an external stakeholder panel, and with the advice and support of South East Employers, the Joint Appointments Committee had recommended the appointment of Tom Horwood as the Joint Chief Executive of Guildford and Waverley Borough Councils.


The full Council may only make or approve the appointment where no well-founded objection has been made by the Leader on behalf of the Executive in accordance with the provisions of Part II of Schedule 1 of the Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (England) Regulations 2001. The Council noted that this provision had been complied with and no well-founded objection had been made by the Leader of the Council on behalf of the Executive.


It was also noted that Waverley Borough Council had also confirmed that no such objection has been made by their Leader on behalf of the Waverley Executive.


The Leader of the Council, Councillor Joss Bigmore proposed, and the Deputy Leader of the Council, Councillor Jan Harwood, seconded a motion to appoint Mr Horwood to the post of Joint Chief Executive.


During the debate, the following points were raised:


·       Concern over the process in respect of the appointment, which was perceived as being rushed, and yielded only one candidate

·       Concern over the collaboration process, with insufficiently robust financial information

·       The appointments process followed the very detailed legal and HR advice given to both councils 


Following the debate, the Council




  (1) That Tom Horwood be appointed to the post of Joint Chief Executive of Guildford and Waverley Borough Councils, and to the statutory roles of Head of Paid Service, Returning Officer and Electoral Registration Officer for both Councils.


(2)   That the above appointments be confirmed once contract negotiations have been finalised.



To ensure the Council complies with the requirements of:


(1)   Section 4 of the Local Government and Housing Act 1989 in respect of the appointment of a (Joint) Head of Paid Service.

(2)   Sections 8 and 35 of the Representation of People Act 1983 in respect of the appointment of Electoral Registration Officer and Returning Officer respectively.

A recorded vote on this matter was requested by Councillor Keith Witham, supported by four other councillors.  The motion was carried with thirty-two councillors voting in favour, eight against, and three abstentions, as follows:





Councillor Paul Abbey

Councillor Tim Anderson

Councillor Jon Askew

Councillor Christopher Barrass

Councillor Joss Bigmore

The Deputy Mayor, Councillor Dennis Booth

Councillor Ruth Brothwell

Councillor Colin Cross

Councillor Angela Gunning

Councillor Gillian Harwood

Councillor Jan Harwood

Councillor Liz Hogger

Councillor Tom Hunt

Councillor Diana Jones

Councillor Steven Lee

Councillor Ted Mayne

Councillor Julia McShane

Councillor Ann McShee

Councillor Bob McShee

Councillor Masuk Miah

Councillor Ramsey Nagaty

Councillor George Potter

Councillor John Redpath

Councillor Maddy Redpath

Councillor John Rigg

Councillor Deborah Seabrook

Councillor Pauline Searle

Councillor James Steel

Councillor Cait Taylor

Councillor James Walsh

Councillor Fiona White

Councillor Catherine Young

Councillor David Bilbé

Councillor Richard Billington

Councillor Graham Eyre

Councillor Andrew Gomm

Councillor Nigel Manning

Councillor Jo Randall

Councillor Paul Spooner

Councillor Keith Witham


Councillor Guida Esteves

The Mayor, Councillor     Marsha Moseley

Councillor Susan Parker




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