Head of Children’s Social Care (Deputy Chief Officer) – £100,825

Darryl FreemanDarryl Freeman Head of Children’s Social Care (Deputy Chief Officer)

Roles and responsibilities

As Head of Service, Darryl is responsible for all children’s social work services in Devon, working with partners to keep the most vulnerable children safer within their families where possible and where this is not possible to ensure effective planning for permanence through the looked after system, including to adoption in appropriate cases. This includes services for disabled children and young offenders.

Darryl supports the Director of Children’s Services to work closely with partners, particularly in education and health, to look at how the whole system in Devon, including universal, targeted and specialist services, can ensure children and families are provided with the right service at the right time in response to need, and making sure we are spending every penny wisely.


Darryl joined Devon County Council in December 2017 as Head of Children’s Services. He qualified as a social worker in 2004, but has worked in a number of local authorities for almost 30 years in a variety of roles. He has been a senior leader since 2013.

Having previously worked for Bedford Borough Council, Darryl led its children’s social care services through a period of considerable change and development, after joining the service in October 2014.

Darryl completed the Future Directors programme in 2016 and is a Fellow for the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA).

He is a member of the Devon Children and Families Partnership (DCFP) Executive.

See the direct reports for Head of Children’s Social Care below:

structure chart showing the people and job roles reporting to Rachel Gillott Acting Head of Children's Social Care (Deputy Chief Officer)


Rachel’s direct reports are:

  • Fran Giblin: Locality Director, North
  • Hilary Brooks: Locality Director, Mid and East
  • Kath Drescher: Service Manager, Adopt South West
  • Shaeda Alam: Improvement Lead
  • Tom Stevenson:Senior Manager, Safeguarding and QA
  • Vanessa Strang: Senior Manager, Corporate Parenting
  • Hilary Brooks:Senior Manager, Disabled Children’s Service
  • Andrea Morris: Senior Manager, Workforce Development
  • Rachel Nall: Principal Social Worker
  • Jenny-Ellen Scotland: Locality Director, Exeter
  • Ashley Arkless: Acting Locality Director, South

Please note that due to the implementation of a new HR system the links to structure charts are not currently available. We are working on a new process in order to be able to provide this information again.