Lambeth Living's 'fat cat' CEO to step down
Published by Max Salsbury for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Local Government
Lambeth Livings' 'fat cat' CEO to step down
The chief executive of Lambeth Living, who once caused an outcry by accepting a £320,000 'fat cat goodbye' from Camden Council, has announced that he is to retire.
Neil Litherland, who has worked in housing for 30 years, took up the post of interim CEO at the ALMO in 2011, before taking on the post full-time.
Mr Litherland joined Camden Council as director of housing in 1995. When he left the council in 2008, then holding the position of deputy chief executive and director of housing and adult social care, he was awarded a pay-off in excess of £320,000.
Camden Council tried to keep the massive 'golden goodbye' a secret, claiming that doing so would be an "unfair and unwarranted interference" in his privacy. However, a freedom of information request revealed the sizeable pay-off, and also showed that Mr Litherland was the highest-earning council boss in London.
At the time, representatives of Camden's social housing tenants were outraged at the size of the 'goodbye', with Meric Apak, chairman of Camden Fed, pointing out that "£320,000 is adequate to build two council homes".
Lambeth Living were unable to confirm whether or not Mr Litherland will be offered a similarly lucrative payout when he leaves the ALMO.
Mr Litherland said: "Lambeth Living has achieved so much in its six-year history. Long gone are the eye-watering levels of empty homes, rent arrears and repairs back-logs. Now, every day we're investing £400,000 in our residents' homes.
"Our workforce aims to be one of the best in London - that's now a matter of when and not if."
Born in Manchester, and graduating from its university with an economics degree, Mr Litherland started his career in Wigan. He picked up experience of front-line housing management as district housing manager at Kirklees before moving to Bolton as its assistant director of housing management.
It is understood that Mr Litherland intends to move to Scotland to spend time with his grandchildren after retiring.
Lambeth Living, which was launched in June 2008 to manage Lambeth Council's housing stock, will begin the search for a new CEO in the autumn.
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