HS2 chief executive Simon Kirby quits for the private sector
Downing Street source says prime minister Theresa May is "100% committed" to HS2 despite departure of Britain's highest-paid civil servant
Simon Kirby, the chief executive of HS2 and Britain's highest-paid civil servant, has announced that he is leaving to join Rolls-Royce.
Kirby was drafted in from Network Rail just over two years ago to run delivery of the new £56bn high speed rail line. He was hired on a salary of £750,000, a rate six times higher than his predecessor Alison Munro.
It was announced over the weekend that Kirby is leaving the civil service to become chief operating officer for jet engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce, with HS2 chairman David Higgins paying tribute to the outgoing chief.
“Simon Kirby used his vast experience to recruit and shape a world-class team which over the coming years and decades will turn HS2 into a reality that will be of lasting benefit to this country,” Higgins said.
Rolls-Royce CEO Warren East meanwhile said Kirby's "exceptional track record in delivering complex major programmes" would help the firm to "strengthen management capability ahead of a period of significant expansion".
Kirby's departure comes amid doubt over the future of the line, with anti-HS2 campaigners saying his exit would be "a serious blow to those who champion HS2".
However, Downing Street sources told The Telegraph over the weekend that new prime minister Theresa May was "100% committed" to the controversial route, with ministers expected to take a decision on the second phase of the line in the autumn.
National Audit Office calls for ‘systematic approach’ to assessing capability and effectiveness...
£940,000 bill does not include VAT or cost of departmental officials' time
Theresa May announces boost to powers of Competition and Markets Authority to improve protection...
Developer hands over state-of-the-art base for HMRC and Office of the Advocate General
Cornerstone provide advice on effective approaches for learning management.
PA Consulting offers a four-point plan to delivering organisational transformation
With the annual worldwide cost of cybercrime set to double from $3tn in 2015 to $6tn by...
BT takes a look at the shifting nature of cyber threats, and how organisations can detect and...