• Long-standing chief executive of North West Boroughs Healthcare Foundation Trust says “I have made a mistake”
  • Returns to work after absence following an allegation by a member of staff
  • Chair says “appropriate sanctions have been applied”

The chief executive of an NHS trust in the north west has apologised after being sanctioned for “unacceptable behaviour”.

Simon Barber, who has been in charge of North West Boroughs Healthcare Foundation Trust for more than ten years, will be returning to work next week after a period of absence.

The community and mental health trust has released a statement including an apology from Mr Barber, but has not explained the nature of the allegations or behaviour.

Chair Helen Bellairs said: “An allegation has been made by a member staff against our chief executive Simon Barber relating to unacceptable behaviour.

“An independent investigation has been carried out and has now concluded. In line with our trust policies for all staff, appropriate sanctions have been applied. Simon will be returning to work on Monday.”

Mr Barber said: “I have made a mistake and, in doing so, I have let myself and the trust down. I have apologised and I am determined this unacceptable behaviour will not happen again.”

The trust released the statement following enquiries by the Warrington Guardian.

The trust provides services in Warrington, St Helens, Halton, Knowsley, Wigan and Bolton.