Published on 8th July 2019

Pat Pratley, deputy chief executive of Cheltenham Borough Council

Pat Pratley, Cheltenham Borough Council’s chief executive has today announced that she will retire from the council on 30 September 2019.

Pat, who has worked for over 39 years in local government, started her career as a clerical assistant at the Borough Council of King’s Lynn and West Norfolk in June 1980. She joined Cheltenham Borough Council as Strategic Director – Corporate Services in October 2006 and became the deputy chief executive in April 2014.  Pat was appointed as the council’s head of paid service in March 2016 and then chief executive in August 2017. 

Pat said: “I feel truly honoured to have served Cheltenham’s residents and businesses in my role as chief executive of the council. 

“As a director I led and implemented some key projects including the creation of The Cheltenham Trust and GO Shared Services.  Latterly as chief executive it has been my privilege to represent my fellow district chief executives on the Gloucestershire Health and Wellbeing Board and the Gloucestershire Safeguarding Childrens’ Board as well as working with colleagues from across the wider public sector as a member of the Gloucestershire Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence Commissioning Steering Group and more recently as a member of Safer Gloucestershire.

“I am particularly proud of the work the council is currently doing to raise awareness of child poverty in Cheltenham through the No Child Left Behind year of action. I have also made it one of my own personal priorities to lead the council’s approach to safeguarding. 

“There is now a strong executive leadership team in place that is well equipped to support the council’s priorities going forward including the drive to become financially sustainable, promoting inclusive growth and modernising how services are delivered to residents, businesses and visitors.

“I was particularly pleased that an independent peer review carried out last year confirmed that the council is performing at a high level with great ambition. The review also recognised that senior leadership is well respected both inside and outside the authority and that we are held in high regard and seen as being ambitious for the town. 

“I am very proud of the team of people who work for CBC and who through their dedication and commitment, do their utmost to make Cheltenham the best place that it can be.”

Councillor Steve Jordan, leader of the council said: “Pat has been an exceptional public servant during her time at the council. I have always been impressed by her total commitment to the role of chief executive, to the staff and members of the council and to serving the whole town.

‘’In the next few weeks the appointments and remuneration committee will meet to begin the process of recruiting Pat’s replacement, to continue her great work and to continue to deliver our priorities. We hope that we will be able to appoint Pat’s successor in October 2019.

“It goes without saying that I wish her and her husband Paul all the very best for their retirement.”

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Pat has over 38 years’ experience working in local government.  Pat started her career at the Borough Council of King’s Lynn and West Norfolk in June 1980.  She started as a clerical assistant/typist in the then Borough Treasurer’s department having joined the Council just after leaving college.  The Council supported Pat through many years of study culminating in her qualifying in her chosen profession as a Member of the Institute of Internal Auditors and then as a Member of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy.

Pat left King’s Lynn in 2002 to become the Audit Manager for Mid Devon District Council.  There Pat took on a broader role supporting the Council in is road to improvement under the Comprehensive Performance Assessment regime and this then led to Pat moving to Shepway District Council in 2005 to become its Director of Organisational Development and Section 151 Officer.  At Shepway Pat supported the then Chief Executive and the senior leadership team in their own corporate improvement journey.  In 2006 Pat came to Cheltenham to lead the Corporate Services directorate as a member of CBC’s executive leadership team.