BARRISTER Katy Skerrett is to take over as Gloucestershire Coroner in the wake of the dismissal and jailing of the county's previous coroner Alan Crickmore, who has now been struck off from the legal profession.

Mrs Skerrett has been an assistant coroner for the county for three years and has conducted inquests in the absence of Crickmore, who was jailed for eight years last November after admitting a £2million fraud in his Cheltenham solicitor's practice.

Mrs Skerrett, who has also worked as a deputy district judge, will take up her new post on a date to be confirmed.

It is understood deputy coroner David Dooley, a well known Gloucestershire solicitor, did not seek the coroner's position.

Gloucestershire County Council said the appointment had been made following a thorough recruitment and selection process.

"The placement was made in line with the requirements of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009, which meant the Chief Coroner for England and Wales was involved in the selection process and approved the appointment along with the Lord Chancellor."

Sally Bye, head of registration and coroner services for the county, said she was looking forward to working with Mrs Skerrett.

“She will provide leadership and a forward-thinking approach to the coroner services," she said.

More details about Mrs Skerrett and her new role will be announced by the council next week.

Crickmore, 57, of East Approach Drive in Cheltenham, was struck off by the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal from the roll of solicitors and pay £66,000 in costs.

Full details of the decision will be published in the next seven weeks, after which he will be given 21 days to appeal.

At his trial last year, it was heard that over a six year period he stole £1,985,097 and spent £398,800 on his credit card alone.

The SRA has paid a total of £116,645 in compensation to nine of Crickmore’s victims.