William Eichler 15 September 2016

Manchester’s retiring chief executive 'hard act to follow'

Sir Howard Bernstein has announced he is to retire as chief executive of Manchester City Council after many years of public service.

As chief executive, Sir Howard oversaw the establishment of the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) and the development of the Northern Powerhouse initiative.

He was also at the forefront of historic devolution agreements which saw the transfer of significant powers and resources, such as all health and social care funding, to Greater Manchester.

Sir Howard, who was knighted in 2003 for his services to the city, joined the council as a junior clerk in 1971 and has been in the top job since 1998.

During the second half of the 1990s, he was instrumental, as the chief executive of Manchester Millennium Ltd, in transforming the city centre in the aftermath of the 1996 IRA bombing.

He also played an important role in securing Manchester’s hosting of the 2002 Commonwealth Games – then the largest multi-sports event ever hosted in the UK.

‘It has been a privilege to serve the city during such a pivotal period, working with many excellent people both within the council and in public and private partner organisations,’ Sir Howard said.

‘I’m incredibly proud of what the city has been able to achieve in this time and to have played a part in it.’

He continued: ‘Manchester is firmly established as a confident and dynamic place, recognised as a premier league world city, although, of course, there are still significant challenges to address to ensure everyone who lives here has the opportunity to share in, and contribute to, its growing success.’

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, said: ‘Sir Howard is widely recognised as one of the great local government chief executives. Having someone of his talent, vision and drive dedicate his career to the city has been an undoubted plus for Manchester.

‘Working with him over many years, addressing challenges and attempting to capture opportunities for the city, has been a pleasure.’

‘He will be a hard act to follow but part of his legacy will be the quality of the team, the strength of relationships and the depth of organisational ambition his successor inherits,’ he added.

A special meeting of the council’s personnel committee will be convened shortly to begin the process of recruiting the next chief executive.

SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Children's Social Workers and Senior Social Workers (Children Looked After)

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£32,427 to £44,658
Here in Wandsworth, we are on an exciting journey of transformation. Richmond upon Thames, London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Peripatetic Customer Services Adviser

Northumberland County Council
£20,444 - £22,129
Northumberland County Council operates a huge range of services across one of the largest counties in the UK. Northumberland
Recuriter: Northumberland County Council

Principal Engineer - York Central

City of York Council
£37,114 to £42,562
We have an exciting opening for an experienced highway design engineer. York, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of York Council

Senior Highway Adoptions Inspector

City of York Council
£31,887 to £36,380
We have an exciting opening for an experienced highway inspector. York, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of York Council

Highways Asset Engineer

Hackney London Borough Council
£37,260 - £38,148
Are you an experienced Asset Management professional looking for your next challenge? Hackney, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Hackney London Borough Council

Partner Content

Circular highways is a necessity not an aspiration – and it’s within our grasp

Shell is helping power the journey towards a circular paving industry with Shell Bitumen LT R, a new product for roads that uses plastics destined for landfill as part of the additives to make the bitumen.

Support from Effective Energy Group for Local Authorities to Deliver £430m Sustainable Warmth Funded Energy Efficiency Projects

Effective Energy Group is now offering its support to the 40 Local Authorities who have received a share of the £430m to deliver their projects on the ground by surveying properties and installing measures.

Pay.UK – the next step in Bacs’ evolution

Dougie Belmore explains how one of the main interfaces between you and Bacs is about to change.