Chris Sinnett will replace Gary Hall in the role of chief executive for South Ribble and Chorley councils. Credit: via South Ribble

South Ribble and Chorley appoint chief exec

Chris Sinnott will be chief executive for the two Lancashire councils starting in 2023.

Sinnott will be taking over the role from Gary Hall, who is retiring at the end of this year. Hall has been chief executive for Chorley Council for 11 years, and chief executive for South Ribble since May 2019.

The joint leadership between the two councils began in May 2019, after former South Ribble Council chief executive Heather McManus was suspended for undisclosed reasons. McManus later resigned.

Originally, Hall was meant to be an interim chief executive. However, in January last year a two-year, fixed-term contract kept the relationship between the two councils intact.

Sinnott’s appointment as the future chief executive was approved by the full council in Chorley on Tuesday and in South Ribble yesterday.

Sinnott is currently the deputy chief executive for the councils and has led on expanding the relationship between the two councils. That now includes a shared services relationship that includes close to half of the workforce, which has saved the councils more than £1m.

“I’m really excited and honoured to be given the opportunity to serve the two councils as chief executive,” Sinnott said.

“It’s my passionate belief that local government and wider public services can massively improve people’s lives, so I’m looking forward to working with everyone to ensure that both councils are able to deliver the very best services for residents.”

Sinnott’s appointment was a unanimous decision, according to Cllr Paul Foster, leader of South Ribble Council.

“Chris has a thorough understanding of local government and public services, and of the borough of South Ribble, and is therefore well placed to deliver on the needs and expectations of our residents,” Foster said.

Hall also praised Sinnott. He said: “Chris, like me, is immensely passionate about the role local councils can play in improving people’s lives – particularly in such testing circumstances – and I believe he is the ideal person to take us forward and ensure we continue to deliver the very best services for our residents.”

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