A chief executive who left his hospital job a year ago as part of a government performance crackdown has been appointed to lead a London trust.

Matthew Kershaw will take up his new role as interim chief executive of Croydon Health Services Trust on 1 October. He will hold the post until the next summer as part of an agreement with NHS Improvement.

Mr Kershaw’s resignation from East Kent Hospitals University Foundation Trust almost exactly a year ago was a result of then health secretary Jeremy Hunt and other NHS national leaders wanting to send a message to trust chief executives that falling levels of accident and emergency performance should not be “normalised”.

Elizabeth McManus, chief executive at the North Middlesex University Hospital Trust also resigned at the same time. Ms McManus returned to the Royal Free London FT while Mr Kershaw was appointed to a role at the King’s Fund.

Mr Kershaw left East Kent last September after two months in which the trust had the worst A&E performance in England. In August the trust’s performance at its main A&E units was 61.8 per cent, against the national target of seeing 95 per cent of attendees within four hours. He had been chief executive at East Kent since January 2016 and before that was chief executive of Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals Trust.

Mike Bell, chairman of Croydon Health Services Trust, said: “Matthew has more than 25 years’ experience in the health service, managing large acute trusts and holding prominent national policy making roles. His skills will be invaluable in leading the trust on the next chapter of its improvement journey.

“Our cancer waiting times are some of the best in London, but like many NHS trusts, our emergency department is under increasing pressure. With our clinicians, Matthew and the senior team at CHS will be responsible for further improving our performance. Working alongside our partners we want to provide excellent – and more coordinated care – for more people as our population continues to grow.”

The trust will start looking for a substantive chief executive before the end of the year.

Croydon’s current chief executive John Goulson is retiring after more than six years leading the trust.