Filby leaves LU post ahead of major changes

London Underground press and public affairs head Claire Filby is to depart next week in an exit that will coincide with responsibility for the network transferring from government to the Mayor’s Transport for London operation.

Following the departure of director of communications Tony Maguire six weeks ago, Filby has been acting as interim communications boss at LU, which will be subsumed into TfL on Tuesday.

Filby’s departure will be one of a number of changes in TfL and LU’s comms teams, with TfL senior press officer Stuart Ross set to become chief press officer, and LU comms planning manager Martin Couldrey taking charge of public affairs, while retaining his current title.

A recruitment process kicked off three weeks ago for Maguire’s replacement, in a role that reports to LU managing director (designate) Tim O’Toole, who assumes his responsibilities next week.

The new comms director will take charge of a PR team of more than 35, spanning press, PR, public affairs, online and internal comms.

The news of the departure of Filby – who does not have a job to go to – follows Maguire’s re-emergence this week in a partner role at City PR agency Financial Dynamics.

Maguire joined the Tube in March 2000 with a remit to beef up support for the controversial public-private partnership.

The first PPP contract, given to Tube Lines, went through on New Year’s Eve, and the second contract – handed to MetroNet – was sealed in April.

Maguire said he plans to focus on growing FD’s public affairs offering across its international network.

Prior to joining LU three-and-a-half years ago (PRWeek, 28 January 2000), Maguire was corporate affairs director at British American Tobacco in New Zealand. His early career was as a journalist, including a spell at the Evening Standard.

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