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Chief Executive announces retirement

Councillors will discuss the future operational leadership of Derbyshire Dales District Council next week following the announcement that Chief Executive Dorcas Bunton is to retire on 31 May.

Mrs Bunton, who grew up in Derbyshire and was appointed Chief Executive of the Dales authority six years ago, was formerly Deputy Chief Executive at Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council and has worked in the public sector for 39 years.

She made her retirement plans known to the Council's Leader and Deputy Leader ahead of giving a formal three months' notice at the end of February.

"I am very fortunate in retiring from Local Government at Derbyshire Dales, a beautiful part of the country rich in tradition and community spirit," said Mrs Bunton. "It is not easy working in the public sector at the moment as there have been years of trying to do more with less. 

"However, I have worked with a phenomenal team of people whose commitment to the communities they serve is second to none, and with councillors who really care about the decisions they make and their impact on people’s daily lives. I wish the Council well in moving forward."

At a full meeting of the Dales authority on Thursday 12 April, which will be broadcast live on the District Council's YouTube channel from 6pm, councillors will discuss options for the future operational leadership of the authority.

A report to the meeting states:

"The position of Chief Executive is the pivotal link between the political and executive management structures. An effective liaison at that level within the organisation is essential to the District Council’s continuing success. The Chief Executive role is the head of the executive management structure and recognised throughout the Dales as where the responsibility lies in terms of operational service delivery. 

"As the Council moves forward to introduce a more commercial approach and works more with businesses they will expect a clear structure and as clear a hierarchy of responsibility as they exercise within their own businesses."

Among the issues councillors will be asked to consider are whether the council needs a Chief Executive and could it explore sharing a Chief Executive role.

Head of Paid Service - the role the Chief Executive currently fulfils - is a statutory position, and if Members want the post of Chief Executive to continue they will also be asked if there is a need to advertise the position or if there is a suitable internal candidate. If an internal appointment were to be made, councillors will debate what happens to the vacancy that would then be created.

  • View the council meeting full report [PDF 3MB] on Mrs Bunton's retirement.
Councillors will discuss the future operational leadership of Derbyshire Dales District Council next week following the announcement that Chief Executive Dorcas Bunton is to retire on 31 May.

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