- NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR AT LIVERPOOL CITY COUNCIL
TONY Hunter, 49, will be in charge of supported living, which includes social services, supported housing and community safety. He is currently Director of Social Services, Housing and Public Protection, at East Riding of Yorkshire Council.
Liverpool City Council chief executive David Henshaw said the three candidates for the high profile post, who were interviewed on Tuesday, were of the highest calibre.
"We were very pleased with the quality of people we interviewed and it was not an easy choice to make. However we're confident that Mr Hunter is the person to continue to build on the huge
achievements already secured in supported living and community safety,"
he said. "We've made incredible strides in this area over the last three years and achieved national recognition for improving services. But we're not complacent. There is still much to be done and we're looking to Mr Hunter to lead this portfolio and make sure we're achieve our vision of becoming a premier local authority in every single area."
City council leader Mike Storey said:- "Just last week inspectors said the city council should be proud of the significant improvements in children's services; we have won an award for our work to develop home care services, and our relationship with our colleagues in health is a close and effective one.
"These are just a few examples of what we've been doing. But there are challenges ahead and we need someone who will help steer us through these as well as continue to build on the good work."
Mr Hunter will take up his post in the autumn, and will also be in charge of community safety, and incredibly successful scheme such as picking up abandoned cars within 24 hours, and the alleygating programme, which will eventually see more than 4,000 gates fitted across the city, cutting burglaries by up to 55 per cent.
As well as being Director at East Riding since 1996 Mr Hunter is also junior vice president of the Association of Directors of Social Services. He will become president in October 2004.
He began his career as a social worker with Doncaster MBC in 1976. He also worked in hospital social work and in children's residential care services before moving to Barnsley MBC in 1984 as manager for home care, day centres, occupational therapy and other services.
Motivated by a desire to develop wider knowledge and understanding of care arrangements in different sectors, Tony then moved on to Barnardos (the national child care charity) in 1986 to lead the
organisation's development work (especially away from residential care) and then on to Price Waterhouse Management Consultants in 1989 where he led on various local and national development projects in the health and social care field.
He remains absolutely committed to open, forward looking partnerships designed to improve health and social care outcomes, and said he was very much looking forward to coming to Liverpool.
"It's a time of unprecedented opportunity for Liverpool and the city really is going places. It also has the leadership to really get it there. It's a real privilege to be part of an already winning team.
I'm very much looking forward to contributing what I can to help Liverpool City Council, and the people of Liverpool, achieve their goals."
LIVERPOOL'S celebrations for Capital of Culture in 2008 have got off to a scorching start!
THE city's own fiery dragon is the latest addition to the fantastic events which will be making the significant date the highlight of the cultural calendar.
The cultural extravaganza will see tourism and culture organisations in Liverpool throwing open their doors for a day of activity, and St. Georges Hall will be launching a special new children's book.
'The Dragon That Squeaked', written by Arabella McIntyre-Brown, tells the story of a Chinese dragon living in the Hall, who befriends a mouse and saves the city from disaster. The book is illustrated by 30 schoolchildren from Liverpool, who beat 1,100 entrants in a special competition.
As part of the 20/08 celebrations, 20,000 books will be delivered to schools across the city, so every child in Liverpool can read all about the adventures of Liverpool's new scaly resident.
The launch of the book is the latest boost to Liverpool's 20/08 festival. Scores of organisations are helping to make it a truly unforgettable day by slashing prices, staging special events and even opening their doors for free, for a day of fantastic cultural events.
In the last 24 hours, offers have flooded in. The line-up for 20/08 includes 20 free places on the Robert Cain Brewery Tour; a free art explosion at Edge Hill Library, for eight - 19 year olds; and a special Liverpool Film Night at the FACT Centre, showcasing the best short films and videos made in Liverpool.
And it doesn't end there. Latest attractions confirmed are free entry into Tate Liverpool's war exhibition - 'Paul Nash: Modern Artist, Ancient Landscape'; an all-day ticket give-away by Radio City and Cream for that weekend's Creamfields; and an Open day at the active Age Centre in Clubmoor, with free computer taster sessions.
There's still plenty of time for organisations to sign up to mark 20/08 in a special and unique way. Liverpool City Council's Creative Director Sue Woodward, said:-
"There has been a fantastic response so far - over the last 24 hours, scores of people have contacted us, wanting to get involved.
It makes me really proud that so many local businesses and organisations are eager to play a part in what will be a truly unforgettable day for the whole city."
Liverpool City Council leader Mike Storey said:- "Liverpool is Capital of Culture because of the passion of its people, and their determination to do the city proud. I'm delighted that people are showing that same passion in their eagerness to celebrate Capital of Culture in 2008 and getting involved on 20th August - 20/08.
It will be an opportunity for thousands of people to enjoy Liverpool's stunning locations, rich culture and varied attractions, on a truly momentous occasion for the city."
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Reports on this page with thanks to Liverpool City Council.