Andrew Lewis Liverpool City Council p Liverpool City Council

Andrew Lewis, currently chief executive of Cheshire West and Chester Council, will take the top spot in Liverpool later this year. Credit: via Liverpool City Council

Liverpool appoints chief executive

Andrew Lewis will take on the role early this summer, joining the local authority from Cheshire West and Chester Council.

Lewis will be replacing Liverpool City Council interim chief executive Theresa Grant, who had been appointed after the resignation of Tony Reeves last summer.

Lewis has been the chief executive of CWAC since 2018. Prior to that, he was managing director of the Tees Valley Combined Authority and assistant chief executive of Newcastle Council.

Lewis’s CV also includes roles as a senior economic advisor at the Treasury, deputy regional director of the government office for the North East, and director of the government’s Northern Way programme.

Liverpool City Mayor Joanne Anderson announced Lewis’s appointment as chief executive during a council meeting on 1 March.

“Andrew Lewis has a strong track record working across all areas of local, regional and national government throughout his career, and I am delighted to announce his appointment,” she said.

“He has a clear vision to deliver on our ambition of transformed public services, with residents at the heart of our decision making,” Anderson continued.

“This is a key moment in our improvement journey, building on the progress we have made over the last 18 months.”

Mike Cunningham, lead commissioner for Liverpool City Council, also voiced his support for Lewis’s appointment.

“Andrew Lewis impressed all of those involved in the selection process with his clarity, his determination, his commitment to public service, and his wealth of experience,” Cunningham said.

“I really look forward to him joining Liverpool City Council and working with him to continue to build on the improvements that we’re already beginning to see.”

Regarding his soon-to-be new role, Lewis said: “Liverpool City Council is at an important staging post in its journey of improvement, and I’m proud to take on this responsibility to support the council and the city at this critical time.

“Liverpool is such a great global city, and its people deserve the very best from their council,” he continued.

“There is so much goodwill and commitment to build upon, from councillors, staff and partners, and I am confident we can make greater progress together.”

Lewis’s hire comes during a shake-up of the council’s placemaking leadership. Last week, Nuala Gallagher was revealed as the new corporate director of city development. Just yesterday, another key appointment was announced – that of Sophie Bevan becoming director of development and major projects.

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Welcome on board, Andrew. Time to return to the days of a business-friendly, pro-investment city like we had when David Henshaw was CEO. Clear out the dead wood and remind your staff they are there to serve, not run the place for their own convenience. I wish you well.

By Sceptical

Someone new with a new attitude? Will he lead in a different direction or just carry on doing the best he can constricted by the straight-jacket that has been tailored for the city by it`s woeful councillors, head of planning ,and outgoing Mayor.
Having worked in Chester he will be fully aware of heritage, but Chester also knew that things have to change and the new shopping centre and other projects have fitted in well.
Liverpool must work with the market not against it, get a grip of your planning department, big cities don`t refuse mid-rise 17 storey blocks, if they have to have zones for tall buildings stop putting restrictions on them or you will never attract the big national or global investors.

By Anonymous

excellent summary by Skeptical well said . I will just add the problem starts at the top . The current Mayor Joanne Anderson never mentions attracting business its all sound bites on political stuff. I was in city center Manchester this week delighted for them but the contrast to Liverpool is terrifying we have fallen so far behind , i believe as a result of awful old school political dogma . Time for a change please , especially for the youth and young professionals of our city.

By Paul M - Woolton

Good luck, you’ll need it.

By Roy

Needs to quickly understand that LCC needs to embrace development and get a grip of that terrible inept planning department. Start meeting developers and work with them instead of doing everything possible to hinder and delay matters. As others have said Liverpool are light years behind other neighbouring cities. All because there is no plan, planners terrified of making decisions and investment has gone elsewhere. Nothing has happened in 5 years!!

By TimeforChange

Cheshire West and Chester planning is no quicker than any other planning dept I am afraid – so don’t expect much here! There is a ‘shortage’ of planners and why would you go and work for a local authority when you can get much more money in consultancy?
CWAC have their share of white elephant projects including Northgate – so all remains to be seen………………………………….

By Bob Dawson

Chester Northgate is not a white elephant, it`s still new and finding it`s feet, it`s attracting new tenants and will be a success. As far as Liverpool planning is concerned it`s not the speed of the planning process it`s the attitude, developers in pre-application communication stage are being put off by all the restrictions in height, in design, builds being in-keeping with neighbourhoods, etc, all so off-putting.

By Anonymous

The people of Liverpool want a modern tall buildings from what i hear and see but unfortunately the council that run the city don’t ever listen to the people, the people vote them back in regardless? so the problem will always be there regardless.
Nothing changes if nothing changes!

By Anonymous

The people of Liverpool DO NOT want tall buildings. You do not speak for us, that’s not what this city is about.
Thanks but NO THANKS.

By Ann Craigs

I don’t think the people are bothered about tall buildings per se. However, they are bothered by the lack of investment and jobs that an over reaching planning department intent on being obstructive can cause. Delays cost money. Also, people of Liverpool will also note that their city was a leading light in building tall buildings as so this is actually part of the history and fabric that should continue.

By Chris

@ Ann 1.56pm, it`s because some people don`t want tall buildings that we are seeing a serious lack of investment in Liverpool, and if you don`t get investment you get stagnation.When that happens jobs dry up and people move away,especially young people, and then a place becomes poorer and looks run down as less council tax is accrued by the local authority. On the other hand when a place is economically buoyant people want to move there, including lots of younger people , they don`t mind living in high-rise and that is part of the reason you see high rise in economically vibrant and confident cities.

By Anonymous

@Ann Craig. Liverpool isn’t about wallowing in dereliction as the sickman of the UK. All of Liverpools Landmarks where considered tall at and ambitious for their time. Consistently watering down proposals is keeping the city from regenerating its been stagnant for a long time whilst Leeds Manchester and Birmingham are positively booming generating new neighbourhoods with outside investment flooding in. Liverpool remains at the bottom of every table a city doesn’t want to be bottom of.

By Anonymous

@Ann the people of Liverpool do want change your in the minority , onwards and definitely upwards .

By Anonymous

@Ann the people of Liverpool do fortunately.

By Anonymous

This is positive, Liverpool has turned a mini corner since Theresa arrived, with Andrew joining and a further deep dive (as suggested by sceptical) some of the key projects can now advance – the debate isn’t about how tall the buildings should be, it’s about how to get momentum back into high quality developments to attract employers and talented people – to make up for the lost ground under previous administrations

By Dave Shannon

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