Preston City Council has announced the death of its former town clerk and chief executive Jim Carr, who died on Sunday aged 69, having been ill for a number of months.
Carr served as chief executive at Preston from March 1996 until his retirement in November 2009. He is survived by his wife of 42 years Pauline and two sons, Matthew and Paul. Born in Blackburn and having lived there all his life, he was a Blackburn Rovers fan and with his wife keen walkers and ballroom dancers.
Described as a highly committed public servant to the people of Lancashire, he worked in local government for 41 years, serving at both Blackburn Council and the Commission for New Towns before Preston.
He arrived at what was then Preston Borough Council in October 1982 as assistant borough treasurer, and was promoted to the post of director of finance in September 1992.
Carr became temporary town clerk and chief executive in March 1996, securing the permanent appointment in March 1997. He led Preston’s successful bid for city status in 2002, as it became the Golden Jubilee City, this counting alongside the foundation work he put in place for the 2012 Guild amongst his key achievements in Preston.
Cllr Trevor Hart, mayor of Preston, said: “This is very sad news. Jim was a great advocate for Preston and will be missed by councillors and council employees alike. What he achieved for Preston is evident – securing city status was the beginning of the regeneration we have seen over a number of years, and still continues today.
“He was very hard working and will be greatly missed. My thoughts are with his family at this sad time.”
The city’s current interim chief executive Adrian Phillips added: “I had the privilege of working with Jim for a great many years and always held him in the very highest esteem. Jim led from the front and by example. He was passionate about both delivering great services for the people of Preston and seeking growth and prosperity for the city.
“As a chief executive he embraced technology to improve services and worked tirelessly for Preston as the heart of Lancashire. He really believed in how great a city Preston could become for the benefit of all its residents.
“Jim was very well respected both within Preston and across Lancashire, we in this city and across our county have lost a great public servant and friend; however the fruits of his hard work for this city will benefit us all for many years to come. My thoughts are with his wife, Pauline and their family during this very sad time.”