Chief executive of Greater Manchester Combined Authority and Transport for Greater Manchester to retire

The chief executive of two key organisations in Greater Manchester has announced his plans to retire after 42 years in public service.
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Eamonn Boylan took the helm of Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) – which includes Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service – in 2017, before also taking on the same role for Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) in 2019.

But he now plans to retire after next year’s mayoral elections.

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Eamonn Boylan is retiring as chief executive of Greater Manchester Combined Authority and Transport for Greater ManchesterEamonn Boylan is retiring as chief executive of Greater Manchester Combined Authority and Transport for Greater Manchester
Eamonn Boylan is retiring as chief executive of Greater Manchester Combined Authority and Transport for Greater Manchester
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It marks the end of four decades in public service, which have included periods in local government in Manchester, Sheffield and London, as deputy chief executive of the Homes and Communities Agency and chief executive of Stockport Council.

Mr Boylan has steered GMCA and TfGM through rapid growth and transformation, as both organisations have developed and taken on more and more responsibilities over the years.

He led the organisations after the Manchester Arena terrorist attack, which led to big changes in the fire service, and the response to the coronavirus pandemic.

He also spearheaded the Trailblazer devolution deal signed with the Government earlier this year, which gave more powers to the city-region, and led the rollout of the Bee Network, which aims to be an integrated London-style public transport system.

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Mr Boylan said: "The last six-and-a-half years leading the combined authority, and four years leading Transport for Greater Manchester, have been the most challenging but also the most enjoyable in my career, and I am grateful to have been given the opportunity to work with so many brilliant people inside these organisations and across our city-region.

"We have delivered on so many fronts. The Trailblazer deal is evidence that we remain at the forefront of the argument for devolution. The sheer determination and tenacity that everyone demonstrated across Greater Manchester during the pandemic shows how much stronger we are when we work together with one voice.

"We have also made significant progress in areas such as adult skills, public service reform, developing the digital eco-system, moving on with our hugely ambitious green agenda, and getting on with delivering Places for Everyone.

"I am immensely proud of what we have created together in Greater Manchester, and I hope that we continue to grow and prosper and make this city-region the best place to get on, grow up and get old."

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Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham said: "This is a sad day for GMCA and TfGM and for me personally. Eamonn has been a great support to me since I first took office in May 2017 and I have always appreciated his strong counsel over the years. He has got us through some of our most challenging times and also our positive times, including overseeing the introduction of the Bee Network.

"He should be extremely proud of his legacy in our city-region and the difference his work has made to people’s lives. It is a testament to the man that he has committed his whole working life to public service, and he absolutely deserves to retire on his own terms on a high. We will miss him."