New head of health at council

Calderdale Council's new director of public health Paul Butcher
Calderdale Council's new director of public health Paul Butcher

There’s a new man at the helm of Calderdale Council’s public health department whose job it is to improve health across the borough.

Paul Butcher, 53, has taken over the £98,000-a-year post from Graham Wardman, who retired in April 2013.

He is a keen cyclist who commutes 16 miles on his bike and intends on promoting similar healthy living among Calderdale residents.

He said: “In the past 12 months public health in England has undergone a great transformation.

“We’re seven months into the transition from the NHS to local authority control and the opportunities to bring change are immense.

“With colleagues from across the council we’re working with communities and our partners, including local GPs and Public Health England, to improve health in Calderdale.”

Since 2007 Mr Butcher was the deputy director of public health and has 23 years experience working in public health.

“I was really pleased to get the post,” he said.

“I’m pleased to work in Calderdale as it feels like you can really make a difference here quickly.

“We need to tackle head-on our major challenges – obesity, smoking, alcohol and infant mortality.

“In particular, my vision is for a smoke free generation.”

One of his other key priorities will be tackling road safety in Calderdale where he said there had been increasing concerns in recent years.