Lancashire children's services Improvement Board

Following the Ofsted inspection of children's services in autumn 2015, an Improvement Board will be responsible for closely monitoring the development and delivery of an improvement plan. The delivery of the plan will be critical to achieving a much improved outcome when Ofsted undertakes a further inspection of these services.

The board will ensure that the county council and its partners work together to make sustainable improvements that promote and protect the wellbeing of vulnerable children and young people. More information about the role of the board can be found in the terms of reference.

As independent chair of the Improvement Board, Tony Crane is responsible for reporting progress to the Secretary of State. Tony is a specialist children's services improvement advisor for the Department for Education and was previously the Director of Children's Services at Cheshire East Council. More recently, he has been working with Leicester City Council as chair of their Improvement Board for children's services.


  • Tony Crane, Independent Chair       
  • Cllr Geoff Driver CBE, Leader of Lancashire County Council
  • Cllr Susie Charles, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, Lancashire County Council
  • Cllr Phillippa Williamson, Lead Member for Children and Young People, Lancashire County Council
  • Angie Ridgwell, Chief Executive, Lancashire County Council
  • John Readman, Interim Executive Director of Education and Children's Services, Lancashire County Council
  • Amanda Hatton, Director of Children's Services, Lancashire County Council
  • Dr Sakthi Karunanithi, Director of Public Health, Lancashire County Council
  • Jane Booth, Chair of the Lancashire Safeguarding Children's Board
  • Bridgett Welch, Lancashire Care Foundation Trust
  • Alison Aylott, Headteacher, Scotforth St Paul's C of E Primary School, Lancaster
  • Stephen Cox, representing Lancashire Association of Secondary School Headteachers
  • Paul Wilcox, Assistant Director, Barnardo's
  • Louise Burton, NHS Safeguarding
  • Hazel Gregory, Blackpool Teaching Hospitals
  • Debbie Duffell, Head of Service Children and Family Wellbeing, Lancashire County Council
  • Superintendent Ian Whitehead, Lancashire Constabulary
  • Chris Coyle, Children's Social Care Senior Manager – East, Lancashire County Council
  • Simon Fisher, Consultant Children's Social Care, Lancashire County Council
  • Stephen Belbin, Principle Advisor School Improvement, Lancashire County Council
  • Sally Allen, Head of Safeguarding, Inspection and Audit, Lancashire County Council
  • Natasha, Young People Representative

Any changes to the membership will be agreed by the board. The board will invite other organisations to attend meetings or join the board as a full member where it believes their experience and background will help it to achieve its aims and purpose.


The Improvement Board meets monthly at County Hall, Preston. A summary of notes from each meeting will be published below.