The notorious east London council has beefed up its top comms role as part of a move to modernise its image and banish memories of its former status as ‘the worst-run place in England'.
Primmer has held the director of comms post at the university for five years and takes up the new role on 1 November. She replaces Kathryn Myers, who quit for Waltham Forest Council in April (PRWeek, 13 January).
Overseeing a team of 30, Primmer will work closely with the council's elected mayor Jules Pipe, and will report to its chief executive, Gill Steward.
‘There is an awareness of the council's past, but there is a huge amount to be proud of,' she told PRWeek.
She added that Hackney was similar to Birmingham because it is cosmopolitan and ethnically and economically diverse. She also highlighted a power shift towards the east of London, which she attributed to the 2012 Olympics and regeneration.
Issues that Primmer will deal with at the council include development plans for the Olympics, notably compulsory purchase orders and the proposal to develop Hackney Marshes.
Before Birmingham University, Primmer was editor of the now-defunct birminghampages.co.uk. She cut her teeth in the Church of England's diocese for Birmingham, where she was comms director for five years.
The university plans to merge its comms and marketing department, beefing up Primmer's role to director of corporate comms.