Peterborough and Cambridgeshire council chiefs feature on Town Hall Rich List

Council chiefs working in Peterborough and Cambridgeshire are included in the annual Town Hall Rich List compiled by pressure group the Taxpayers’ Alliance.

Wednesday, 7th April 2021, 5:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 7th April 2021, 12:23 pm

The list is of all council employees in the UK in receipt of more than £100,000 in total remuneration.

According to the organisation’s research, the number of local authority employees receiving more than £100,000 has risen to the highest level since 2013/14.

The rich list includes two people from Peterborough City Council and nine from Cambridgeshire County Council.

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Peterborough Town Hall in Bridge Street

However, this does not provide a clear picture as some of the people on the county council list hold the same roles in Peterborough but are not included for both authorities.

This includes chief executive Gillian Beasley who is said to take home £200,610, although the city council’s most recent Statement of Accounts states that she took home £207,509 in 2019/20, with Peterborough paying £107,205 of that.

The corporate director for people and communities, Wendi Ogle-Welbourn, receives £147,496 according to the TPA list, however, the council’s latest statement says she took home £149,764 in 2019/20, of which Peterborough paid £75,737.

Other shared roles, and the amount paid by Peterborough City Council in 2019/20 according to the Statement of Accounts, include:

. Director of public health - £63,459

. Director of governance - £66,763

. Executive Director of Place & Economy - £79,617

. Director of Customer & Digital Services - £75,382

. Director of Business Improvement & Development - £82,314.

According to the TPA:

. At least 2,802 people employed by local authorities in 2019/20 received more than £100,000 in total remuneration, an increase of 135 on 2018/19; 693 received more than £150,000, an increase of 26 than the previous year.

. The average number of employees who received more than £100,000 in total remuneration per local authority is seven. The average number receiving more than £150,000 is 1.7.

. The local authority with the greatest number of employees whose remuneration was in excess of £100,000 was Essex County Council with 40 employees, five more than the previous year. Glasgow had the highest number of employees receiving more than £150,000 at 14, two more than the previous year.

. The highest remunerated council employee in 2019/20 was the deputy chief executive at Coventry City Council, receiving £573,660 in total remuneration. This included a loss of office payment of £395,110, pension payment of £26,559 and salary of £151,991.

. A total of 31 local authority employees received remuneration in excess of a quarter of a million pounds in 2019/20. This was one fewer than the previous year.

A Cambridgeshire County Council and Peterborough City Council spokesperson said: “Councils are large, complex organisations and need to recruit and retain the best people to lead them and make sure that they are effective. We are also aware that the majority of the money we spend comes from public funds so our focus is on making every penny count.

“Both councils have a small and almost totally joint corporate management team which has significantly reduced the number of employees being paid more than £100,000 by either Cambridgeshire County Council or Peterborough City Council.

“As part of an ongoing drive to improve efficiency and effectiveness, as well as value for money, the costs of senior management posts are shared between both councils. This arrangement includes the authority’s chief executive, director of public health and executive directors of both people and communities directorate and the place and economy directorate.

“All senior council salaries are agreed in line with our senior management pay structure which is approved by elected members on our Employment Committee. In accordance with the council’s pay policy, advice is sought from the Hay Group’s independent evaluation scheme.

“Both councils also publish a list of all those officers whose salaries are £50,000 or higher on their websites annually for the purposes of transparency.”

The spokesperson added that some of the figures on the rich list were incorrect.

Peterborough and Cambridgeshire on the rich list


. Corporate director of resources

. Assistant director of HR and resources


. Deputy chief executive and chief finance officer (S151 Officer)


. Chief executive

. Service director: adults and safeguarding

. Executive director: people and communities

. Director: business improvement and development

. Joint executive director: place and economy

. Director: customer and digital services

. Director: legal and governance (monitoring officer)

. Director: public health.