PUBLIC SECT0R: Douglas quits as Transport for London comms director

London's local government regime has lost its second high-profile

PR chief after only a few months in the job.



Colin Douglas, director of communications at Transport for London -

which is currently embroiled in a lengthy spat with the Government over

the running of the Tube - has announced he is to quit after just six

months.



His decision comes just two months after a similar setback for mayor Ken

Livingstone's PR machine when Greater London Authority director of

communications Charlotte Rowe announced her resignation.



A GLA spokeswoman at the time said Rowe was disappointed with working in

the public sector (PRWeek, 28 September).



As with Rowe, Douglas is not leaving to take another job. He said: 'I'm

leaving for personal reasons, I'll be taking a bit of a break then

looking around at the options.'



Anxious to avoid accusations of a clash of personalities with transport

commissioner Bob Kiley and Livingstone, he added that he enjoyed working

in the public sector and that he had been at TfL during a time when

interesting issues were being thrown up.



Douglas joined TfL from Sport England where he held the same

position.



Prior to joining Sport England he was a director at agency Citigate

Westminster.



Head of media relations Lesley McLeod will take over until a permanent

replacement is found.



Rowe's departure from the GLA in September has prompted a

re-organisation of the authority's media relations function.



Head of corporate services Manny Lewis is conducting a review of the

authority's media relations needs, to be completed by the new year. Only

then will the mayor's management committee make a decision on whether to

replace Rowe.



Meanwhile, the investment promoter the London Development Agency is

looking to create its first PR team, which will include a head of

communications, marketing and public affairs.



The successful postholder will be expected to shape and implement the

agency's internal and external communications strategies.



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