Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Doncaster Children's Trust chair named as Colin Hilton

The person tasked with turning around child protection services in Doncaster has been revealed by Michael Gove.

Colin Hilton, former director of the Children's Improvement Board, will be the first chair of Doncaster Children's Trust when it launches in April.

Doncaster Council was told last year it was to be stripped of control of children's services, following a "legacy of failure".

A report said a "decisive break" was needed for Doncaster to move on.

The Mayor of Doncaster, Ros Jones, said she welcomed the appointment of Mr Hilton, a former chief executive of Liverpool City Council.

'New model'

In March 2009, the government ordered a takeover of Doncaster's children's services following the deaths of seven children in the district through abuse or neglect over five years.

Less than a year later a serious case review found the attacks in the nearby town of Edlington in which two young boys were tortured by two brothers, aged 11 and 12, had been "preventable".

In July 2013 Education Secretary Mr Gove ruled an independent trust would run children's services in Doncaster.

The new trust will take over all children's social work and care operations while the council will retain responsibility for schools and education.

Mr Gove said: "The trust will take responsibility for delivery of Doncaster children's social care services this year, operating in shadow form from 1 April 2014.

"It will provide a new model for the delivery of children's social care services in England, one intended to drive improvement and innovation through strong independent leadership."

Ms Jones said, "I welcome Colin's appointment as the chair of our new children's trust.

"Colin is an experienced chief executive as well as a former director of children's services so thoroughly understands the issues involved in these important areas."

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