Holyrood chief government to stop after 20 years on the Scottish Parliament

Holyrood most senior official, chief government Sir Paul Grice, is to go away the Scottish Parliament  after 20 years within the job.

Sir Paul is quitting his function in September to tackle a brand new publish as principal and vice chancellor of Edinburgh’s Queen Margaret College.

Asserting his departure, he stated it had been a “privilege and a pleasure to have been concerned with the parliament for the reason that starting”.

He added: “My enthusiasm for the Parliament and dedication to what it stands for is undimmed, however now seems like the best time to go.”

Presiding officer Ken Macitosh led tributes, saying Sir Paul – who was knighted in 2016 – had introduced “professionalism and dedication to the function”, but in addition praising his “heat, humour and generosity of spirit”.

Sir Paul Grice along with his Knighthood for providers to the Scottish Parliament (Gordon Terris/The Herald/PA)

Mr Macintosh stated: “Paul Grice has been on the coronary heart of the Scottish Parliament from the very starting. He led the crew which established this new open and accessible establishment, designed to serve the entire folks of Scotland, happening to develop into our first chief government, the primary clerk of the Scottish Parliament.”

He added: “On a private notice, he has been a information and a pal to me and to so many different MSPs all through our time in Parliament, and I can not thank him sufficient for the assistance he gave me after I took on the function of presiding officer.

“His help, recommendation and clever counsel was all the time welcome, and I converse on behalf of the entire organisation to say that he can be really missed.”

MSPs joined within the tributes, with Conservative deputy chief Jackson Carlaw saying Sir Paul had “steered the Scottish Parliament by the primary 20 years of its existence, and he’ll be an especially powerful act to comply with”.

The Tory added: “He has made an enormous contribution in guaranteeing the Scottish Parliament is a longtime and high-profile a part of Scottish public life.”

Scottish Labour chief Richard Leonard stated he had been “an unimaginable servant to the Scottish Parliament and the reason for devolution for the reason that Parliament’s very basis”.

Mr Leonard added: “He has all the time acted with nice integrity and ability because the Parliament has navigated its manner by the dealing with of additional devolved powers.”

Inexperienced MSP Patrick Harvie hailed the outgoing chief government’s “super service” to Holyrood, saying: “Paul has performed a pivotal function because the Parliament has developed and develop into embedded within the on a regular basis lives of the folks of Scotland.”

Dr Frances Dow CBE, the chair of the Court docket of Queen Margaret College, stated they have been “delighted” he can be heading the establishment.

She said: “His philosophy on schooling aligns with the worth that QMU locations upon social justice, and on mental capital with each a theoretical and sensible focus. These components equip our graduates and employees to make an actual distinction to the world round them.

“Given his distinguished roles in civil society thus far in his profession, it’s abundantly clear that Sir Paul can be a strong voice for QMU externally and for the upper schooling sector as a complete.”