A trust chief executive from Bristol has been appointed as the new director of the NHS in Wales.

Ann Lloyd, chief executive of North Bristol trust, will take up the post vacated by Peter Gregory in the new year.

NHS managers welcomed the appointment of 'one of their own'.

NHS Confederation in Wales director Richard Thomas said: 'What the service will welcome is that she is a career health service manager.

'That's what the National Assembly needs - someone with first-hand knowledge of how the health service works.'

Cardiff and Vale trust chief executive David Edwards said Ms Lloyd, who had been an assessor for senior appointments at his trust, was 'very experienced, knowledgeable and well respected'.

North East Wales trust chief executive Hilary Pepler, who has been working in Wales for five months, said the Welsh NHS was 'welcoming to someone outside the immediate system'.

The new director's 'real task' would be looking at the relationship between the health service and the Welsh Assembly and 'how the interface is managed and opened up', she said.

Ms Lloyd's salary will be in the region of£113,000, the Welsh Assembly said.