It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…?


At a meeting tonight (Tuesday), if the webcast is working, visitors will be able to watch  the council consider the appointment of a new head honcho at Waverley Towers.

We read with interest that the title of Chief Executive, which for some reason lapsed following the departure of Mrs Mopp, and during the ‘Wen-am-I-leaving ‘ period, is now to be reinstated for the new appointee so he becomes Chief Executive. 

We await with bated breath as to whether  the new appointee will be able to take ‘Your Waverley’ out of its current malaise. To do so will require considerable expertise and skill and we do not envy the task he has ahead of him. So all of us wish you a very Happy Christmas Mr Horwood – and we are sure – A Very Prosperous New Year.

Screen Shot 2017-08-07 at 21.01.05 Mr Horwood, who  will be leaving Hampshire Council shortly, will be joined by two new Strategic Directors, 




Screen Shot 2017-12-17 at 20.47.58.png

  1. Following the departure of the previous Head of Paid Service, the Council appointed Tom Horwood as interim Managing Director and Head of Paid Service. The appointment took effect on 1 August 2017 for an initial period of up to 6 months on a part-time arrangement involving two to four days per week, as necessary to meet the demands of the job. These arrangements were extended by the Council on the 5 December to continue until Waverley appoints a permanent Chief Executive.

  2. The Council also agreed the permanent senior management structure, comprising of a full-time Chief Executive and two full time Strategic Directors with effect from 1 January 2018. It was agreed that the Chief Executive position would include the statutory functions of Returning Officer and Electoral Registration Officer.
  3. The Council agreed to commence the recruitment process to appoint to both the vacant Chief Executive role and Strategic Director role, with external advice and support provided by Solace in Business, a leading recruitment specialist in local government with a strong track record in appointments to Chief Executive roles.


Appointment of Chief Executive

  1. Given that the Council will have two interim arrangements at the top of its staffing structure from January, it is important that the Council is able to secure permanent appointments as quickly as possible, starting with the Chief Executive role.
  2. The Job Description and Person Specification for the Chief Executive role was prepared by Solace in Business, drawing on established best practice across local government. This is attached in Annexe 1.
  3. Following an executive search and soft market testing conducted by Solace in Business and following their independent advice, Tom Horwood, Waverley’s Interim Managing Director, was invited to submit a detailed application. Following initial appraisal by Solace in Business, a full and rigorous assessment process was undertaken which included:

 a technical interview by a highly experienced local government Chief Executive who also had a leading role in the Council’s recent Strategic Review;

 Assessment by a strategic stakeholder panel comprising Chief Executive/Chief Officer level representation from Local Government, Health, the Police, and the Voluntary Sector.

The results from a range of psychometric tests; a final interview by a selection panel comprising the Leader of the Council,

members drawn from the Executive and the Leader of the Minority Group.

  1. Officers discussed the process with the Council’s external auditors as part of developing this approach. The above also reflects the proposed selection process reported to the Council on 5 December 2017 and has been supported by professional HR advice.
  2. Following the above selection process, it is the unanimous decision of the Member selection panel that Tom Horwood be recommended for appointment to the role of Chief Executive of Waverley Borough Council.

Next Steps

  1. Subject to confirmation of the appointment by the Council, the newly-appointed Chief Executive will then have the opportunity to lead the recruitment process for the Strategic Director role, even if they have not yet commenced their employment with Waverley Borough Council in this role.
  2. The intention will then be for Mr Horwood to commence in this role as quickly as possible, subject to a mutually agreed notice period with his current employers.
  3. The recruitment process will then commence for the soon to be vacant Strategic Director role, with the Council’s new Chief Executive having an active part in the process, concluding with a Member Interview Panel.


12. The Council will consider a report in due course recommending appointment to the Strategic Director role.


It is recommended that Tom Horwood be appointed to the permanent post of Chief Executive, including the statutory roles of Head of Paid Service, Returning Officer and Electoral Registration Officer.

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