Chief officer post at Thanet council to be ditched

Thanet council

A chief officer post at Thanet council is to be ‘deleted.’

The ditching of the role, which has not been specified, will be discussed in private by members of Thanet council’s General Purposes Committee on Friday (March 16).

The issue will not be in public as officers say it is exempt as it will “reveal the identity of an individual.”

The agenda papers to members state: “ Whilst the council will always try to keep exempt information to a minimum, in this case disclosure of the information contained within the report would prejudice the council.

“On this occasion, discussion of staffing matters ought to be conducted in confidence in order to protect the interests of both the staff and council as breach of confidentiality may lead to litigation against the council.”

Thanet council has been undergoing a corporate restructure although the number of staff who may have been, or face being, redundant has not been revealed.

Rob Kenyon

The restructure was confirmed by TDC when The Isle of Thanet News revealed last October that Thanet council’s Director of Community Services, Rob Kenyon, took voluntary redundancy from his role.

In January, in response to a Freedom of Information request from The Isle of Thanet News, TDC confirmed staff were in consultation but a spokesman said information on departments and the number of employees involved could not be released as the process was ongoing.

The restructure is due to be complete by the end of this month (March).

The council spokesman said in January: “The council can confirm it is currently undergoing a corporate restructure and there has been consultation with staff.

“The council cannot provide any further information at this time because final decisions and implementation of the restructuring and any potential redeployments or redundancies have not been concluded. The council aims to complete the process by the end of March.”

£2million savings

A statement issued by TDC following the departure of Mr Kenyon confirmed that the corporate restructure was being carried out due to the need for TDC to make savings of £2million per year.

Currently there are four members of the TDC corporate management team; Chief Executive Madeline Homer (pictured); Director of operational services, Gavin Waite; Director of corporate governance, Tim Howes and Director of corporate resources, Tim Willis.

It has been confirmed that Tim Willis will be the Deputy Chief Executive from April 2018.

Overall TDC employs around 700 people.


Salaries, including cash benefits and pension payments, for Thanet’s top five council officers came to £589,040 in the financial year of April 2016-March 2017.

Current chief executive Madeline Homer received £123,173, plus cash benefits of £5,000 and pension contributions of £16,887, taking the annual total to £145,060.

Director of Corporate Governance Tim Howes £104,293, plus £4,000 in cash benefits and £13,252 pension contributions taking the total to £121,518.

Director of Corporate Resources Tim Willis £97,112, cash benefits £4,000, pension £13,255 equalling £114,367.

Director of Operational Services Gavin Waite £85,496, cash benefits £4,000, pension £11,777, equalling 101,273.

Former Director of Community Services Rob Kenyon  received £90,381, cash benefits £4,000, pension £12,441, equalling £106,822.

Restructures at TDC

The last major restructure was in 2014 when Sue McGonigal was chief executive. She quit in January 2015 following a six-month absence during an investigation into a planning application.

Mrs McGonigal was cleared of any wrongdoing but decided to resign from the post. She received a £82,500 “loss of office” pay off. The compensation was not agreed and paid until the 2016 financial year. She was replaced by Madeline Homer.

Prior to that was the restructure in 2011 where Richard Samuels left the post of chief executive with a ‘golden handshake’ said to be in the region of £200,000 and handed the reigns to Dr McGonigal.


  1. Is my council tax being used to pay these obscene golden handshakes and pay offs? I would rather the money was used to improve the quality of service. This looks like mismanagement. Organisations function best in my experience when it is clear what someone is being paid for.

  2. Once again obscene amounts of money is being paid to these people..with the financial cut backs to local services how can this be justified…surely someone scrutinises these payouts? nobody with any integrity would accept it

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