Until such time as a permanent appointment is made, Deputy Chief Fire Officer Andy Hermiston will act into the Chief Fire Officer role for Gloucestershire.
Andy has eight years experience in senior fire officer roles and has an in depth knowledge of the county.
Pete Bungard, Chief Executive of Gloucestershire County Council said: “We are extremely proud of our fire and rescue service. The outcomes the service achieves continue to be incredibly positive. Not only do we have the lowest number of accidental fires ever, but the scale of preventative activity positively impacts on a significant number of the most vulnerable people in Gloucestershire, particularly the more elderly.”
“I will be looking for Andy to bring a different style to the leadership of the service, which, now with the ultimate responsibility for delivery of this, I believe he can do.”
A number of whistle blowing concerns were raised around the time of Stewart Edgar’s resignation, all of which have be appropriately investigated. Some weaknesses were identified around financial and governance processes, but that is all. The council’s audit services will continue to work with Andy and the service to develop stronger process, where this is necessary.
Whistleblowing concerns were also raised around the culture within the service. Peter Jones, former Chief Fire Officer (until 2006) and former County Council Deputy Chief Executive (until 2015), looked into these. Peter has spoken to a significant number of colleagues and whilst the culture is by no means broken work on the culture of the service is needed.
The process for recruiting a new Chief Fire Officer will begin in September.