WORKFORCE: East of England Ambulance Service Trust chief executive Anthony Marsh has left the role with the organisation yet to appoint a successor.

The trust confirmed Dr Marsh left the role on 5 August but a statement issued by the trust did not address why he had left the role before a permanent replacement had been appointed.

Dr Marsh was appointed to the role in January 2014 for up to a two year period, after carrying out an independent review of the trust, which has faced significant performance problems.

A trust statement said it was “in the process of recruiting a new chief executive”.

“The final interviews have been completed and the trust is in the process of agreeing final terms and arrangements for an appointment.

“We will make an announcement when this appointment can be confirmed, but the Trust is aiming to have the new [chief executive] in post in August.”

More than 700 staff signed a petition to the health secretary calling for Dr Marsh to remain in his position. Unison’s branch secretary Fraer Stevenson said it was “very disappointing the [East of England Ambulance] board and trust chair have decided not to listen to those staff”.

He led the trust alongside his role as chief executive of West Midlands Ambulance Service Foundation Trust, where he has been since 2006.  

The decision to allow Dr Marsh to lead two trusts at once sparked criticism from prominent local MPs. Then health minister Dan Poulter and prominent Labour MP Tom Watson, claimed he was overpaid for the split role. Dr Poulter, also the MP for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich, described Mr Marsh’s £232,000 joint salary as an “obscenely high and a profligate waste of money.

Deputy chief executive Sandy Brown will act up to lead the organisation until a permanent appointment is made.