Mick Cartledge: Burnley Council chief executive announces retirement plans

Burnley Council’s chief executive has announced his plans to retire from public service after 42 years in local government.
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Mick Cartledge will leave the council at the end of July.

He has worked at three different local authorities, joining Burnley in 2001 as director of community services where, over the last 21 years, he carried out several roles, before becoming chief executive in 2017.

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Burnley Council chief executive Mick CartledgeBurnley Council chief executive Mick Cartledge
Burnley Council chief executive Mick Cartledge

During his time at the council, Mick has seen many services transformed, including re-procurement of waste and street cleansing contracts, the establishment of Burnley Leisure Trust, and a strategic partnership with Liberata through the provision of a wide range of back office and customer services.

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More recently he led the council’s response to Covid which was the most challenging time of his career.

He has also overseen several development projects, including the St Peter’s Health and Leisure Centre, working with the University of Central Lancashire on their expansion of in Burnley and the forthcoming Pioneer Place development, due to open in this summer.

Mick said: “This has been a very difficult decision, as I’ve absolutely loved working in Burnley, however, I turn 60 in February and plan to move to London when I’ve retired and spend more time with family and friends.

“I would like to thank all colleagues and members for the hard work and dedication they show day in day out, week in, week out and who are the essential part in making sure we provide good services and take the town forward.

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“I know Burnley will continue to prosper as we also have a fantastic range of partners, as well as great businesses, many of whom are Burnley Bondholders and who are so ambitious and are real ambassadors for Burnley.

“It has been a real honour and privilege to serve as chief executive. Burnley will always hold a very special place in my heart, and I will continue to have a keen interest in the town and will watch it develop and go on to achieve future successes.”

The appointment of the chief executive will take place over the coming months, with Mick agreeing to stay until the summer to ensure there is a smooth transition to the new postholder.

Coun. Afrasiab Anwar, Burnley Council leader, said: “I want to take this opportunity to thank Mick for everything he has done for Burnley over the last 21 years. Mick has led the council through some incredibly challenging periods. He joined us not long after the disturbances, which was a difficult time in our history and he played a vital role in uniting our communities through his role as director of community services.

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“I witnessed this first hand as a young council officer working in his directorate at the time and one thing that always stood out to me was how approachable and supportive he always was and how he made everyone feel valued.

“More recently I have had the pleasure of working closely with Mick as an elected member including the last 18 months as leader. During this time his leadership has never been more evident than over the last two years throughout the pandemic. He has led with calmness and assurance, and I have enormous respect for the way he has inspired those around him to continue to deliver for our residents despite all the obstacles posed by Covid-19.

“Colleagues from across Lancashire often comment on the exciting developments taking place across Burnley and Padiham and how the whole borough has been transformed. A lot of this is down to Mick's vision and he has ensured Burnley punches way above its weight.

“I have seen how highly he is regarded and respected by our partners across Lancashire and I'm sure they will be just as saddened as we are to hear he is leaving.

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“Mick will be a tough act to follow and although he is a Yorkshireman, I'm proud to call him one of our own. It has been my great pleasure to work alongside him and I wish him a very happy, and well deserved, retirement.”