A council has been highlighted by a pressure group after a council officer received a redundancy payout of £165,700 - more than £70,000 above the Government cap.

Under a senior management restructure, Sally Holland, corporate director for corporate services at Southend Council. received the redundancy package back in 2016.

This sum included a salary of £66,000 and £99,700 of pension contributions.

The payout came in ninth on a list of the ten biggest pay-offs for council officer redundancies in a report compiled by the TaxPayers’ Alliance.

The annual town hall rich list revealed that when it comes to pay packages at least 2,306 council employees earned more than £100,000 in the year to March 2017.

The highest payment was to Chris West, executive director resources for Coventry Council, who received £448,230 compensation last year.

Severance payments to departing council executives are meant to be capped at £95,000 under the Enterprise Act which was passed in 2016.

Ministers have said that they are committed to it, but the cap has yet to be enforced while the Government carries out a consultation.

John O’Connell, chief executive of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: “Most families are paying more council tax this month, and they will be shocked to see how so much of their hard-earned money is being spent on huge payoffs for senior staff at local councils.

“It’s simply unacceptable that town hall bosses are still receiving staggering payouts for leaving their jobs, despite a £95,000 cap passed by the last government.”

Ali Griffin, chief executive of Southend Council, said: “As part of our work to refocus and restructure the senior leadership team and to prepare the Council for the future, two senior posts were removed from the organisation in September 2016.

“This meant that two long-serving officers took voluntary redundancy.

“Any member of staff who is made either voluntarily or compulsorily redundant is entitled to a redundancy payment, and this case is no different. All payments were made are in line with the council’s normal severance policy and no additional discretionary payments were made.

“The figures quoted combine both the combined redundancy pay of £121,000 and the additional pension contributions required to be paid to the pension fund when a staff member is made redundant.

“The redundancy payments actually received by these two senior officers were £66,000 and £55,000 respectively. This reflects the seniority of their roles and the long service they put into the Council.”