Meet the team

Our team members all have a thorough understanding of early years, childcare and children’s centres, with direct experience of working with children, families and communities. More...

What’s more, they are able to develop local solutions, whilst being on top of current and future national developments, and have a strong drive to achieve the highest professional and quality standards at all times. All members of the team regularly work directly with children, young people, parents, practitioners, partners and local authority officers, which means we have a deep, current and informed understanding of their needs, concerns and goals. In any one week, we could be storytelling in a pre-school group, delivering child protection or EYFS training to childminders, facilitating a local authority network, and meeting with the Number 10 policy unit.

James Hempsall
Hempsall OBE
Development and Office Team
Associate trainers and consultants

Our Director, James Hempsall OBE, has worked in the sector for 25 years. He is a former playworker, children’s centre manager, FE lecturer, development worker, and regional manager/senior projects manager for a childcare charity. His career has been spent supporting organisations to develop quality and sustainable childcare.

He loves to deliver training or facilitate workshops and network meetings, sharing ideas and working to useful solutions. He has an MA in the Ethics of Social Welfare and DTLLS qualification. James is also the National Support Director of the DfE Achieving Two Year Olds national support contract, and managing editor at Children’s Centre Leader.

He write for many reader magazines and publications including:
• Nurseryworld
• Practical Pre-School
• Teach Nursery
• Home Childcarer
• Children & Young People Now

Contact James directly:

Our Training Manager, Kate Sparling is a former childminder with a strong track record in adult education. Kate holds a Cert Ed. Has worked for us since 2006, so she has a thorough knowledge of our training programme. She leads the delivery of training, if you are a training client of ours, Kate is your first contact for getting training designed and delivered.

Our Research Manager, Barbara Wilson, has been with us since the start of the business in 1999. For all our research projects, Barbara has been the project manager. She oversees all research activities and reporting, and has worked on numerous sure start local programme and children’s centres evaluations, childcare sufficiency assessments, and consultations of children, young people, parents, employers and professionals. Barbara is also the Achieving Two Year Olds region lead for East.

Our Strategic Consultant, Jo Pringle has a thorough knowledge of the business and funding aspects of early years and childcare development. She has project managed various early years entitlement pilots and trials both for local authorities and regional government. Jo acts as the Achieving Two Year Olds region manager for the North, and provides one-to-one support for local authority and provider implementation. Jo also leads on our business and management training, and has been delivering our popular G is for Grow training for Northamptonshire County Council.

Our development officer team (Ros Moseley, Kerry Mattock and Julie Crookes) work on our Northamptonshire and other projects. Collectively, the team has a practical background in out of school and pre-school childcare, childminding, and extended schools. With previous experience of working in the maintained, voluntary, independent and schools sectors, they use their knowledge to support management committees and parents to volunteer, achieve personal goals, and develop their management responsibilities and business skills.

Because we are out and about delivering most of the time, we rely on a well-resourced and efficient office, and we know our clients want instant contactability and quick and effective responses too. This function is provided by Jo Chapman (Business Manager), Raxa Chauhan, (Office Assistant), and Sufiyan Khalifa (apprentice).

Development Team Office Team

Our trainers and consultants bring lots of specialisms at all levels and we carefully match their skills, knowledge and approach to the projects we are working on:

Cathy Barber, consultant and trainer
Geoff Dorrity, consultant
Aly Fuller, trainer
Pat Gale MBE, consultant
Amanda Grant, trainer
Maggie Jeffrey, trainer
Jackie Lincoln, consultant
Kerry Mattock, trainer
Cheryl Morris, consultant and trainer
Mel Parks, writer, editor, social media
Lesley Sanderson, consultant
Helen Scutt, trainer
Peter Tonks, research consultant
Ann Van Dyke, consultant and A2YO region lead (South)
Catherine Wakerley, trainer
Ruth Webster, trainer
Kay Williams, trainer
Sue Williams, trainer
Victoria White, trainer