WEST Dorset District Council has backed the appointment of a new chief executive.

Matt Prosser was announced as the new chief executive for the district council as well as Weymouth and Portland Borough Council.

The appointment of the strategic director for South Oxfordshire District Council and the Vale of the White Horse District Council was supported at a full meeting of West Dorset District Council, having already gone before colleagues in Weymouth and Portland.

Mr Prosser will succeed current incumbent David Clarke, who is retiring in April, and will receive a salary of £110,000 plus a performance related bonus of £5,000 to match that of his predecessor.

Council leader Robert Gould said: “He showed excellent qualities and I’m sure will prove a superb chief executive for this authority.”

Council chairman Gillian Summers paid tribute to outgoing chairman Mr Clarke for his contribution to the authority.

She said: “I know that previous chairmen will want to join me in saying a big thank you to David for his support, his encouragement and his hard work in making West Dorset District Council such a successful council.

“We wish you a very happy and well deserved retirement.”

Mr Gould stated there is likely to be a ‘gap’ between Mr Clarke’s retirement and Mr Prosser fulfilling his notice period in his current post and current director for resources Jason Vaughan will act as interim head of paid service during that period.