Francis Habgood appointed as independent chair of Buckinghamshire Safeguarding Boards

As the County Council continues work on its Ofsted Improvement Plan – meet the man who will play a vital role in ensuring Buckinghamshire’s vulnerable children and adults are kept safe.

Francis Habgood has been recruited as the independent chair of the Buckinghamshire Safeguarding Children Board (BSCB) and the Buckinghamshire Safeguarding Adults Board (BSAB), taking the reins from Fran Gosling-Thomas and Marie Seaton respectively. Francis will be starting as independent chair in August.

The role, one of the most important in the County, is charged with making sure all local services work together well to promote and safeguard the welfare of Buckinghamshire’s children and adults, both protecting the vulnerable from abuse and neglect and helping them get the most from life.

Francis recently retired from his role as Chief Constable in Thames Valley Police, where he had completed over 32 years’ service in policing. As part of his term as Chief Constable, Francis helped the service to become one of the highest ranked forces in the country.

As part of his extensive career in policing, Francis has been active as a member and chair of various police committees, and in 2012 he was awarded the Queen’s Police Medal.

He said: “I have spent my whole career protecting the most vulnerable members of our society so I am delighted to be able to carry on doing this work in my home county. I look forward to ensuring that those organisations that safeguard children and adults do so in the most effective way and work closely together.

“I am grateful for the work that my predecessors have started and am excited about the opportunities that lie ahead.”

Warren Whyte, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services said: “We know that the best way to protect our children and young people is to work together across organisations and we look forward to Francis driving ongoing improvements in our partnership arrangements in helping to achieve this.”

Lin Hazell, Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing said: “I’m delighted that we’ve been able to recruit someone of Francis’ calibre to this vital role. He brings with him a wealth of experience and I’m looking forward to utilising his knowledge to support and challenge our work in Buckinghamshire.”