A union has welcomed the results of a consultation into reinstating a chief executive at Harrow Borough Council.

Results of a consultation published yesterday showed two thirds of those surveyed were in favour of bringing back the role after it was scrapped last year by the previous Conservative leadership.

A total of 384 people took part after the council's Labour administration launched the consultation of 5,000 people including staff, councillors, union members and local authority school staff.

A spokesman for Harrow Unison said: "The union welcomes the result of the staff consultation regarding the senior management arrangements of Harrow Council with staff opting for a return of the chief executive post."

The union says the decision was the correct result at a "very significant time" for the local authority, when "strong and dynamic corporate oversight and leadership is urgently required to meet the daunting challenges facing Harrow".

The spokesman added that 384 responses to the consultation "grossly distorts the sheer number of our members who supported the re-introduction of the chief executive position".

He said: "We welcome the respectful way in which this process has been conducted with staff and the commitment of the new Labour administration to continue this dialogue with staff and the community on many of the very difficult issues as a result of the vicious coalition government cuts.

"This consultation is a far cry from the disingenuous approach from (Conservative group leader) Cllr Susan Hall in deleting, arbitrarily, the chief executive post."

Under the previous Conservative administration the position of most senior officer at the council was abolished, resulting in the then chief executive Michael Lockwood leaving his job with a payoff of £168,000.