COUNCILS that get rid of their chief executives are putting too much power in one politician’s hands, according to a senior Conservative local politician.

Cllr Adrian Hardman, from Worcestershire County Council, said that, while he is in charge, his county will never follow the example of Wiltshire’s Tory bosses, who decided to do without their chief executive Andrew Kerr in 2011. Wiltshire now has three corporate directors who share administrative responsibility, while political leader Jane Scott is on record as saying: “The buck stops with me.

“This is an organisation which is led by politicians, not by officers.”

Cllr Hardman said: “I think actually looking after the delivery of services is quite different from democratic accountability.

“It also puts a lot of responsibility and power into the hands of one politician.”

Mr Kerr said at the time of his departure: "It's a huge shift in philosophy in how the council is led, and it remains to be seen whether that will be successful."