Top Thanet council officer suspended

Tim Willis has been with the authority since 2015

Thanet council’s deputy chief executive has been suspended, according to inside sources.

Tim Willis, who oversees the Housing and Planning service, Communications and Digital, Finance and Procurement and leads digital transformation across the council’s services was stood down from his role on Wednesday.

In 2017, when his role was Director of Corporate Resources Tim Willis received a salary of  £98,245 plus £4,000 ‘cash benefits’ totalling £102,245 not including pension contributions of £15,156.

The reason for his suspension has not been confirmed by Thanet council. Mr Willis has been with the authority since 2015.

Thanet council has been asked for a statement.

South Thanet Labour policy officer Rebecca Gordon-Nesbitt has slammed the action, sayng: “It is utterly unacceptable that Thanet District Council’s Deputy Chief Executive, Tim Willis, has been suspended. I’ve always found Tim to be a man of integrity keen to support a positive vision for Thanet.”

Cllr Karen Constantine, who has a background in employment law, says councillors need to have an overview of staffing matters and a policy that promotes impartiality and clarity needs to be implemented.

She said: “We need to implement the full JNC (Joint Negotiating Committee) grievance and disciplinary policy as most other councils, such as Medway, have done. This means there would be proper steps in place so there is a clear process in law and impartiality is guaranteed, as much as it can be.”

A number of councillors are now calling for a complete change of hands at the top of the management structure at Thanet council.

56 Comments

  1. and I have just seen a document where he was going to write of a SHL debt of £176.988.32.
    SHL never paid thanet council for rent or council tax or anything
    yet TW was in this document going to write the debt off
    with the sale of the freehold to arrowgrass this needs looking into
    I have sent a press release to overview and scrutiny
    and all others ….
    what you do not know is that TW wanted or it may have happened was the SHL debt to be paid by arrowgrass so a credit note was raised!

    BBC have been informed

    • Have you also notified the press that it was possibly TDC that drove SHL into the position that it found itself in, because the commitments that TDC made to SHL were never kept.
      Confidentiality clauses sometimes have a lot to answer for.

      • Sands Heritage was set up in 2014 so that TDC had an operator for dreamland
        goes insolvent less than 2 years later
        TDC claim that Sands Heritage had the money
        just like Ramsgate seafront
        do you see a pattern emerging here

        not strange there at all as since 2002 the district auditor reported that TDC do not keep or make minutes of meetings.

  2. Wow can’t believe they get that amount of money. No wondered they’ve never got money to spend on their council poperty too busy paying their workforce huge wages

    • JayDee
      Only those at the top get huge pay packets. Your workers now struggle with one person doing the job that used to be done by three. Wages were actually reduced. Some workers are on their knees with their workload. It is not TDC now, it’s Civica

  3. While cleaning up TDC, could we have an investigation into how Sarre windmill was sold off and the original machinery taken out so that it could be converted into flats? How did it get planning permission to wreck a working windmill? Why should Thanet District Council favour the owner so much that this could be done without repercussions?

    • I wrote a letter of complaint to the council about the state of this listed building. Unbelievable how it has been allowed to become such an mess.

    • Why was Ms Homer instated into the chief exec role by Bayford? Why did that role go to someone who was capable of running the council. She has no experience of running a council. Just an office junior who was given the OK by Bayford. Therein lies our problem.

      • Ms Homer stood in for the previous CEO for many months and was her deputy I believe. Don’t run someone down because it is following on with others. I also think Top Officers get far too much money. It is Thanet, not Liverpool or Leeds.

  4. It’s a cover up, the suspension is a cover up to save their own wrong doings from being found out. An external audit of the council is needed right now urgently before all our services hit rock bottom. There is no staff available to do the job properly that’s on every remit. That’s housing, planning, waste collection, asset transfers, leisure. The council is failing miserably because there’s no staff there to oversee the departments. An external audit is critical to investigate the failings. Dover, Canterbury are not failing they actually are coping very well with their services.

    The dismissal of this officer is due to him
    Knowing too much and then getting rid of him before because he has challenged them.

    Councillors demand an external full audit of the council immediately where scrutiny is carried out from the highest level at an independent level and where no stone will be left unturned.

    • Take your concerns to the Local Government Ombudsmen.
      This dreadfully serious situation needs to be reported immediately, so that the truth can be discovered.

  5. TDC seem to be more interested in wasting our money on supporting companies like RSP rather than doing the best for residents who pay their wages.

      • Some people are under the impression that TDC is giving some sort of financial support to RSP.
        They’re not.
        What they did do was make life so difficult for Musgrave and Cartner of SHP that they withdrew their plans for the district and took their investment somewhere else.

    • TDC have in no way supported RSP. RSP’s recent acquisition of Manston had nothing to do with the council. Your comment is misleading and mischief making

  6. TDC, run by the same political party as our government, doesn’t take a genius to work out why. Just wait till Boris has finished with us, this is a tea party compared to what he’s got planned for us. Still, I bet they’ll hark back to the last Labour government and blame them as they have for the last almost 10 years and most of you will buy it, how else have this lot stayed in power for so long. Too many of us with the ‘me first’ attitude thanks to the evil Thatcher period. So glad my parents are here to see this, just as they predicted would happen with the Conservatives in power.

  7. Whilst it is interesting reading comments no one seems to be asking why Waite and Homer have suspended this guy,
    why do you assume it is something he has done?
    Ask yourself why Officers seem to leave with a big pay out just before the sh*t hits the fan

    • Why suspend the officer now, what’s he done? His more than likely seen what’s been going on and challenged them and they want him sacked now.

      • Exactly what happened to me. I couldn’t keep signing my name to illegal practices, consequently I got escorted from my desk and literally banned without crime or conviction from the employment office in Margate. Scared their cock ups caused by being crap at their conspired cover ups would come out…cretins.

  8. Why was Ms Homer instated into the chief exec role by Bayford? Why did that role go to someone who was capable of running the council. She has no experience of running a council. Just an office junior who was given the OK by Bayford. Therein lies our problem.

  9. Has it never occurred to you that elected councillors don’t want highly competent professionals running the council, preventing them from making stupid, corrupt decisions. Far better to appoint an overpaid patsy who you can scapegoat when it all goes wrong. Now, there are many who are saying that TW is the best of a bad bunch. Was he threatening the blow the whistle?

  10. Walker, I’m sorry to tell you that Madeline Homer (who previously was Deputy CEO) was appointed in the dying days of the last Labour administration, not by Bob Bayford! And as someone working with several newly elected Cllrs I don’t recognise what you say as applying to the new bunch, Eggnog!

  11. lets kick them all out
    lets get it sorted
    bring our towns to how it should be
    thriving not a dive
    happy not miserable
    mental health at a high
    nothing for children or young people

    we need a council that is not full of bad happenings
    enough is enough

    LETS SORT IT!

  12. Long overdue for a government inspector to historically audit the housing ,planning and financial decisions made in secret over the last decade…

  13. TDC as sure as night follows day TDC will never change. For thanet as a run down area with lots of low paid jobs it has always puzzled me how thanet is a tory stronghold, it should be a labour stronghold.
    Going back in time we had someone walking round ramsgate harbour pretending to be a sheikh, or someone printing his own money or our tory MP going to prison. It doesnt matter what the Tories do in thanet the people in thanet keep voting them in. Now thanet is turning into a really very strong tory stronghold. Lots of people with top end jobs, Ferrari, Lamborghini, with Porsche and jaguar’s as common as fords now. Thanet is becoming a very split place to live with the rich getting alot richer and the poor getting a lot poorer. We have more people living rough and begging, whilst more and more can afford top end cars. TDC only care about the top end of society thats what Tories do. Yet time after time thanet vote them in I dont understand it ….

  14. Richard Samuels left on health grounds, Sue Mcgonagal and Clive Hart both departed under odd circumstances, MH formerly the head of housing was moved into the CE position after a bit of creative rearrangement of council posts. Building control embroiled in a dismissal case that effectively revolved around “cosy relatinships” with developers, if rumours circulating are true , all is not well in planning department.
    As a council area , we’re skint, trying to change national legislation as a local issue in respect of live animal exports was an absurd personal crusade by officers of the day, the whole dreamland fiasco will be another chapter, any sale proceeds will no doubt be swallowed up elsewhere, plus there is the small problem of grant clawbacks needed to be written off by the grant funders. But either way margate is now effectively in the hands of arrowgrass and freshwater.

    Arlington house itself offloaded asap after it twisted in the 1987 storm, around 80 flats vacated and left empty until the last few years and changes to council tax.

    Not all the counsils fault government policy has led to the area being a dumping ground for too many of lifes least fortunate, these are a massive drain on the towns services, we should be a good place to be , as evidenced by the more affluent areas. But the balance is all wrong and going the wrong way as ever greater numbers of houses are built by the housing associations and london boroughs to deal with their housing needs. Whilst road and service infrastructure is well below the standards needed for the isles recent and future growth.

    Council has engaged Paramount Property to deal with the emergency housing needs, this will be either incredibly expensive or (maybe and) create new areas of asb and poor property.

    Things have been buoyed up by the influx of london money in last 5 years, if this continues or at least stays then maybe a glimmer of hope, but thanet has a recurring history of struggling to pull its socks up when times are good only to have its trousers fall down as soon as the economy falters.

  15. It is a sad day for TDC to see the most honourable person be suspended. He isn’t a good of a bad bunch he is just good. He has done amazing things for TDC and should be reinstated.

  16. Over the last 20 years TDC has had three clear-outs of senior staff. But we always end up back in the situation where large numbers of people are critical of the officers. But officers are just there to implement the decisions made by the elected councillors. Think about it logically. The problem has never been the officers, but the idiotic councillors who fail to take advice and make stupid decisions which have effectively bankrupted Thanet. The solution is in the hands of the electorate. Stop voting for idiots who are wasting your money.

  17. Spot on Confused! How on earth can Thanet be a Tory stronghold. We have some of the most deprived youngsters in the country and our state schools are shocking both in fabric and teaching. We will soon have to travel to Ashford if we suffer a stroke, yet both our MPs do nothing. Our local council is and has been run by a succession of bandits and no-hopers only interested n theirs and their like….the well off ‘I’m alright Jack mob.
    So, like you Confused, I’m confused. They must be putting something in the water as the people of Thanet continue to vote these ‘ I’m alright Jack ‘. politicians both at local and national level. Wake up Thanet they will only drive you further into the ground if you let them

  18. It would take a little off their salaries to fit a final exit door on our block. This has been requested for several years but the open stairway to the block in votes all sorts of dossiers to ‘utilise the stairway. caught two individuals this morning, ‘smoking’ something. fortunately this pair were not violent or abusive for a change.

  19. I always find it amazing how jealously drives a lot of people.
    You see someone with a big wage and you go “that’s too much, they’re not worth that, sack them”.
    You don’t say it to GPs?
    You don’t say it to nurses?

    But you do say it about senior management at big councils, and of headteachers. It’s like your tiny minds can’t grasp the subject.
    If being an online nutter was a skillset of value, then you might have a chance of getting one of those jobs, but it’s not, it requires a thick skin and a thankless job, getting heckled by jealous pitchfork-jabbers online. It’s not a good look.
    This is modern Britain, this is 2019, you really should be better than this, you need to pull your socks up.

    • one no one is jealous here Mr Bull
      you cannot compare a GP’s or nurses wage to top executives at a council
      Do not call us all online nutters
      We want to know why he was suspended?
      Nothing to do with what you are saying at all but yes his salary is high but then so is all the exectives at the council always has been.
      I do not wear socks Mr Bull …
      Thanet is a deprived area
      vandalism at Dalby Square last night
      security at Bugsys
      whilst top people on top money sit there all crass!

      NO ..give me one more day and I am going to hit headline news!

      I have been working on research and evidence based things for years

      Oh and by the way I have qualifications and a degree but will not be subjected to your bull….shXX

  20. In the process of doing what I did a few years ago and strange it has come round full circle.
    Once I have the news I will share it if I can due to data protection GDPR

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