Chief’s surprise departure at NHS trust

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An NHs trust in Yorkshire last night announced a major shake-up with the sudden departure of its chief executive.

Phil Morley said he had made a “personal decision” to leave Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust.

The trust, which runs Hull Royal Infirmary and Castle Hill Hospital, is among a handful in the region applying to be an elite foundation trust but its plans have been repeatedly delayed. It was one of the first in the country to undergo a root-and-branch review of care by the new chief inspector of hospitals in February.

Mr Morley attracted worldwide publicity last year in a leaked internal video showing him dressed as Superman dancing through hospital corridors to the Tony Christie song Is This the Way to Amarillo to promote fitness at work.

In a statement, he confirmed he was “moving on”. “This was a personal decision that I took several weeks ago and I shared it with my senior team in order that we could put transitional arrangements in place,” he said.

John Saxby, lately retired as chief executive of Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust in north-east Manchester, has been appointed interim chief executive.

The trust also announced the appointment of Keith Hopkins as interim chairman. He is a former chief executive and chairman of Croda International and current pro-chancellor at Hull University.