A new chief executive has been appointed at Breckland District Council.

At a full council meeting on Thursday, members voted to approve the appointment of Maxine O’Mahony to the council’s top job.

It will see her promoted from her current role as an executive director at the council, a post she has held for 12 years.

Ms O’Mahony first joined the council in 2007 as an HR consultant, quickly gaining promotion to the head of HR before becoming a director in 2009.

During this time, she has held responsibility for all of the council’s services at one stage, and was more recently a key force behind its response to Covid.

The new chief executive, who was born in Breckland, said: “I love the place and I love the people of Breckland. It’s truly in my DNA and I couldn’t be more pleased to be in this position.

“Breckland has had some great chief executives through the years, and I promise that I will work tirelessly with all of the members of this committee and our officers to be the best chief executive you’ve ever had.”

She added: “Bring it on is what I say. To Rob [Walker, executive director for place and delivery] and the senior team, the rest of awesome Team Breckland - boom. Breckland here we come is all I can say. Thank you very much everyone.”

Green member Timothy Birt was the only member to vote against the appointment, and he asked for his vote to be officially recorded.

It led to cries of “shame” and “shame on you” from four councillors.

Independent councillor Roger Atterwill said the appointment was “exactly the right decision for this council”.

The council’s Labour opposition leader, Terry Jermy, said he had been involved in the “very full, comprehensive process” by which Ms O’Mahony’s candidacy was decided, and she had “passed with flying colours”.