Bexley Council is suggesting slashing around 360 jobs after central government funding dries up over the next five years.

Councillors are deciding how to plug the £40 million savings gap which must be filled by 2019.

The council’s financial support from central Government has reduced by around a third for the 2010-2015 period and there has been increased financial pressure on children’s and adults’ services.

The cabinet will meet on Tuesday evening to discuss the proposals - which will begin by a shake-up of council directors - and a consultation will begin on July 21.

The agenda report describes how Bexley Council is considering getting rid of around 360 full-time employees out of its 1,700-strong workforce by 2018.  

The savings proposals will also be discussed on the General Purposes meeting on Wednesday evening when other proposals will be considered  including renegotiation of staff terms and conditions and a four-year pay freeze for management.

Councillors told News Shopper they hope residents will contribute to say where cuts should happen.

Bexley’s council leader Councillor Teresa O’Neil said: “We want to hear from residents about the services they value the most so we know what to prioritise.

“We will be considering a blueprint for top management on Wednesday. We are starting at director level and then looking at deputy directors.

“It’s also worth pointing out the strategy takes us up to 2018 so these job changes are part of a long-term plan. 

"Some of these job losses will happen through people leaving voluntarily or being redeployed."

Deputy leader Councillor Gareth Bacon said: “We need to be leaner and we need to make savings at the top end of this structure.

“This is the first step and won’t just be director-level but there will be other jobs. 

“It was one of the things the council has to do because we need to be responsive.

“The director of education and social care got another job and so it was an opportune moment to change things. We are proposing splitting that role into two roles, one for children and one for adults.

“The posts of director of environment and wellbeing and director of customer and corporate services will be effectively merged into a new role, instead it will be director of regeneration, communities and customer services.”

The cabinet meeting is open to the public and will take place at 7.30pm on July 15 at the Civic Offices in Watling Street.

The meeting will be webcast and can be viewed online either live or afterwards here.

Further details of the consultation will be released next week.