Associate Trainers

David Niven Associates has a fantastic bank of Associates who have an unprecedented wealth of experience, both individually and as a team. Their training and feedback is continuously excellent and we are so proud of their results.


 Tony Domaille

Tony Domaille is a recently retired police officer holding a National Police Trainers Certificate and a Certificate in Education (FE) awarded by the University of the West of England. Through David Niven Associates, and independently held contracts, he offers training and consultancy services tailored to the needs of professionals. Click To Find Out More

In the field of child protection Tony is able to draw upon more than thirty years of experience as an investigator, practitioner and trainer. Before retiring from the police service he led an investigative team dealing with paedophile offending and crimes involving sexual exploitation of children via the Internet. He was also an interview advisor in major investigations.

Tony has trained professionals from statutory, voluntary and other agencies throughout the South of England as well as abroad for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Courses he has delivered include:

  • Child Protection Awareness as well as CP Levels 1, 2 and 3
  • Level 3 Safeguarding for Health professionals
  • Safeguarding for Schools
  • Child Exploitation and the Internet
  • Questioning Skills
  • Achieving Best Evidence

Tony maintains his practitioner skills including working on independent investigations and case reviews for the national governing body of a church.


What people say about the training –

–          “Very informative, excellent training” (Bath and North East Somerset Council)

–          “this training was excellent all of the Health Visitors should have it, it must be repeated” (Bath and North East Somerset Health Visitors)

–          “it was brilliant to have someone taking the course who had years of experience to draw upon.” (Barnardo’s)

–          “His presentation style enabled a detailed understanding of issues. The participants in the training course were very complimentary. The training received very strong approval from our evaluations – 86% scored the training excellent” (North Somerset Safeguarding Children Board)

–          “Thought provoking and most valuable.” (Clifton Diocese Office for the Protection of Children and Vulnerable Adults)

–          “Fantastic presentation and delivery of the information by the course leader.” (Wiltshire County Council)


Sam Chapman 

Sam Chapman is a registered social worker, qualified to advanced level, having practiced at level four in the field of child protection. She is also a qualified residential social worker, practice teacher/assessor and trainer in adult education. She is presently engaged in the final stages of completing a MSC in Continuing Professional Development. Click To Find Out More

Practice experience includes an early career in residential social work, working in a range of residential units including child assessment and specialist adolescent assessment centre and secure unit. Practice experience in the field has included positions in family centre, hospital, child guidance clinic, GP practice, comprehensive school, as well as long experience in the statutory sector of child protection. This work has included assessment and intervention across the range of statutory duties. Eg:  first response, assessments Sect 47 interventions, child protection planning and key worker responsibilities, care planning and managing for looked after children. Areas of work have included London, a city council and large rural county.

Teaching and training has included supervisory responsibilities for both newly qualified social workers and assessment of undergraduate social workers on placement practice. Continued teaching to BSc Social Work undergraduates, includes child care law, to PGCE teachers, child protection, and formerly social work methods to social work undergraduates.

Consolidating training experience includes a period as the lead trainer for child protection  and chair of LSCB Training Committee, in a large rural county, with responsibilities for managing writing and delivering training courses for both to social work and multi-agency audiences. This led to a management role in the statutory sector, managing a multi-agency training team with responsibilities for workforce development.

Latter successful continued experience as an independent trainer in the private sector has been to deliver training in the main, to the statutory sector across the country.  Subject areas include, attachment, communicating with children, assessment and analysis, risk assessment, working with parents with learning disabilities, domestic abuse, legislation and sect 47 processes. Audiences have been social workers, voluntary sector staff, foster carers, managers, police officers, medical and teaching personnel.


 Liz Harkin

Liz has worked within a children’s social care setting for over 23 years, specializing in Child Protection and Safeguarding. Over that time, she has not only worked extensively as a front – line practitioner, she has also gained a significant level of management at both a team manager and a senior level. Click To Find Out More

Liz also has experience in Senior Interim Manager roles as well as reviewing and consulting on children’s social care safeguarding and child protection services and was involved as a Support Advisor to the CWDC NQSW Pilot Programme.

Liz also has completed a number of Serious Case Reviews as either Chair or Overview Author, as well as reviewing local authority service provision. She now delivers training related to practice and implications related to Serious Case Review research.

Both in practice and in senior management, Liz has always shown true commitment to those children and families she has responsibility for. She has always felt that neglect was one of the most insidious forms of abuse if deliberate, and one of the most desperate if neglect by omission where parenting skills were just not present. Her training always receives excellent feedback.


 Kieran File

Kieran is a media linguist and communication consultant. His PhD research explored the language of media interviews. In particular, he examined the ways in which interviewers and interviewees behaved in interviews to achieve a variety of public performance goals.Click To Find Out More

Kieran works with high profile professional athletes to help them with their media interview skills. He is now working with social workers, both at managerial level and on the front line, to help them develop strategies for dealing with the demands of interviewing and the presentation of self in the media in a social work context.

Our linguistic choices are the building blocks for communication. Reflecting on your language use in media interviews can really ensure you’re getting your message right. Kieran applies his PhD research expertise and skills to help you explore how you can use language, and interpret the language choices of others, when interacting in media interviews. With this awareness, you can be better prepared and ready to perform confidently in the media.


Jenni Randall and David Akinsanya

David and Jenni regularly train social work staff together. They use their long term relationship, which started in 1972 when David was himself Looked After and Jenni was his social worker, as the basis for looking at the elements in practice which underpin good social work with children in public care. Click To Find Out More

Individually, Jenni has over 40 years’ experience as a social worker and social work manager. She has worked almost exclusively with children and young people within the care system in this time including periods in residential work. She has recent experience in front line practice in both a looked after children team and referral and assessment.

David is now a journalist; film maker and campaigner for Looked After children. He regularly contributes to media debates on issues relating to young people in care and in the justice system. His TV credits include Find me a family and two programmes about his own experiences Looked After by the State and Jailed by the State.

Together they have complementary skills and experience which enable them to look at every aspect of working with young people living away from home. They are willing and able to use their individual and shared experiences with others to improve service delivery.

The course they have delivered together has been described as” the best course ever attended” and “inspiring and motivational”.


Jo Ratcliffe

Jo has been involved in social care with children and families for 20 years, qualifying as a social worker in 1996. She has had a varied career from direct child protection work, care proceedings and working with looked after children to children’s participation work. Click To Find Out More

She also has experience as a Family Group Conference Co-ordinator and manager. In 2004 she was awarded the post graduate certificate in adult education and since such time has delivered multi-agency and single agency training, largely focussing on child protection.

She currently works for Swindon Borough Council as Practice Development Manager, this role is very varied and includes working with social workers directly concerning issues of practice, she is an adoption panel member, chairs the Family and Friends panel and has a policy and social work practice development responsibility.


Tony Griffin

Tony Griffin is currently employed as a staff development officer by a local authority. He has the lead responsibility for the development and implementation of the multi-agency safeguarding children training. He is a member of the Local Safeguarding Children Board Training Sub Group. Click To Find Out More

Tony is a retired Police Officer and has been involved in child protection since the early 1990’s. As a Detective Sergeant he managed a Child Abuse Investigation Team for 5 ½ years before retiring in 2007.


Mark Norman

Mark is an enthusiastic and passionate trainer of the public, professionals and service users of mental health, addiction and related subjects and is an accredited Adult and Youth Mental Health First Aid trainer. Mark has worked as a clinician, manager and consultant in mental health services since 1980 and has a broad and varied experience, he makes every effort to bring fun and enjoyment to training without lessening the importance of the subject matter. Click To Find Out More

Mark was module manager for the Harm Reduction Module for the Graduate Diploma in Addiction Studies, accredited and validated by University of Leeds. With over 20 years’ experience working in Addiction services working regionally and nationally, he specialises in Harm Reduction and specifically in safer injecting techniques and dual diagnosis. Mark is the co-author of a chapter in “Injecting Illicit Drugs” edited by Pates, McBride and Arnold, alongside several journal articles and has delivered training and facilitation in England and Northern Ireland in both addiction related subjects, team building and service improvement issues.

Mark has written the content for the Devon Partnership Mental Health Trust Dual Diagnosis Level One E-learning and was commissioned to deliver level 2 face to face training. In addition, he has provided on-site training, facilitation and external review pertaining to all aspects of Mental Health Service Redesign, HIV & Hepatitis, Safer injection techniques & detoxification technique, Race Equality Cultural Capability and areas pertaining to service user and carer involvement in service redesign.

Mark trained as a Mental Health First Aid (Adult and Youth) approved Instructor in 2010, and has now delivered courses to a wide variety of staff groups, including Learning Disability staff, administration staff, and for drug and alcohol staff, service users and carers. Mark has arranged sessions for staff in private and statutory sectors.

Mark delivers training on mental health systems to service users and carers who wish to become more involved in service development, and supported The Two Way Street ltd, a Black African Caribbean Social Firm (which was run by service users) in Bristol. He has also delivered training to the Somali Mental Health and Drug Project in Bristol. Mark recently led on dual diagnosis training as well as the South West Development Centre Dual Diagnosis strategy development.  In addition he has worked on Race Equality and Cultural Capability development and training in Cornwall and the SW and was the lead on delivery to all inpatient staff in Cornwall.

Alongside the training and project management work, recent experience as a volunteer director for The Two Way Street, allowed him to expand the variety and richness of training available. Mark has also successfully completed his MBA at University of Plymouth.

Caroline Vost

Caroline Vost is a recently retired police officer who holds a BA (Hons) First Class Post Compulsory Education & Training. She is also an A1 NVQ Assessor & Internal Verifier (Internal quality assurance of assessment). Through a number of training providers including David Niven Associates, Caroline offers training consultancy. Click To Find Out More

In the safeguarding children and adult arenas Caroline calls upon thirty years practitioner experience, which has included quality operational investigative safeguarding cases. Most recently in 2012 within a child protection team. Before retiring from the police service Caroline was the lead vulnerability trainer responsible for police internal safeguarding training and joint police & social care Section 47 joint investigation training. During that time she held the post of Chair to a Local Safeguarding Children’s Board Training Sub Group.

Caroline has trained professionals from statutory and voluntary agencies within the region, London & Birmingham. She delivers training locally on the BSc Social Work & Early Years Foundation Degree.

Courses she has delivered include:-

v  Foundation & Advanced Child Protection

v  Section 47 Joint Investigation

v  The Children Act 1989 (S47) & Safeguarding in Practice

v  Advanced 1 Day Child-minders Safeguarding Children

v  Foundation & Refresher Safeguarding Adults

v  Safeguarding Adults Investigating Officer

v  Safeguarding Adults Investigating Manager

v  Achieving Best Evidence

v  Domestic Abuse and the DASH Risk Assessment

Caroline maintains her subject knowledge & credibility. She is the co-author of an article on a training product in a forthcoming edition of Child Abuse Review entitled; The Sexual Exploitation of Children: Can you recognise the signs? The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) and the National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA), 2012.


Comments from most recent delivered training:

–          “Thank you. Great venue – lovely trainer – professional, approachable and informative.”

–          “It was a pleasure to have training run by such a professional, she was fab.”

–          “Very good trainer.”

–          “I particularly thought that the trainer was excellent – knowledgeable, confident and able to handle a ‘rowdy’ group. Would recommend this course – very useful. Thank you.”

(Wiltshire, Advanced Child Protection for Child Minders) 


Angela McCormack

As an experienced psychotherapist Angela brings a wealth of experience to this training. Angela works with adults and children who have been sexually abused in her role as psychotherapist and a lead clinician at The Green House Bristol. Through this role she has acquired a deep understanding and knowledge of this topic and is familiar with the most recent theories in this field, offering a broad range of knowledge and research to draw upon. Click To Find Out More

For the past three years Angela has been a Director of TAP, the Taunton Association for Psychotherapy, a charity dedicated to raising public awareness through psychological training and education. In this management role she assists in coordinating various CPD opportunities for both therapy practitioners and the community in general.

Recent commissions include sessions commissioned by both Bristol City Council and Camden Borough in London to deliver trainings on similar topics, such as Understanding Sexually Harmful Behaviour, Working with Sexual Trauma and Caring for Sexually Abused Children, and Angela is able to use her broader knowledge to enhance this training. From her experience as a former Director of ChildLine and NSPCC, as well as a role as an independent consultant, Angela has facilitated a wide range of training over her career, including leading workshops on training skills.

Angela has regularly worked with a multi-agency audience, delivering training and workshops on a range of topics. She has delivered various trainings to Social Work Staff, Parents and Foster Carers as well as therapists and other adults working in the helping professions. Recently she has delivered training on “Working with Young People who Display Sexually Harmful Behaviour”, which was attended by staff from Bristol Social Services.

Testimonials from recent sessions include:

–          “Good all round day. Most enjoyable.”

–          “At no time was the training boring. It was presented in an interesting and understandable way.”

–          “Very well presented, clear and understandable.”

–          “I found this training very useful and would recommend it to colleagues.”


As an experienced trainer Angela is able to bring a range of skills to enhance the training quality. She is skilled at balancing a range of teaching techniques to ensure that the pace of the training is sufficiently quick to maintain interest and to achieve aims, whilst allowing delegates time to consolidate learning through questions and discussion. Angela uses a range of more active learning styles, such as group exercises and short tasks, as well as listening and watching activities. She also provides high quality materials to reinforce the learning from the day and enable delegates to carry learning into their daily work. Angela relates openly to delegates and ensures that people feel comfortable and welcome throughout the day, understanding that this is a prerequisite to any learning.

To ensure that her knowledge remains up to date Angela:

  • regularly reads newly published literature on this topic
  • collaborates with other experts in this field and shares learning
  • Attends training events, such as a recent day on Trauma organised by Limbus in Devon, and a day on Complex Trauma at the Severnside Institute for Psychotherapy in Bristol


Jane Evans

Freelance & Associate Trainer, Parenting Specialist, Author, Blogger, Speaker and Consultant. Jane Evans has built up a wealth of parenting and early-years knowledge throughout her career as a parenting worker for a domestic violence organisation, a respite foster carer, a child-minder, a children’s practitioner in a family centre and a support worker in a child-protection team, whilst also working in and with schools and pre-schools. Click To Find Out More

She now uses this as the basis for the training she delivers on attachment in early years, on parenting and children affected by trauma ‘Tuning In To Children and Parenting Beyond Trauma’, and for her bespoke parenting course for those affected by trauma either post-domestic violence or as adoptive parents, foster or kinship carers.

Jane has also written an early-years story book to enable children to explore feelings relating to domestic violence, How are you feeling today Baby Bear?  Published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers February 2014


Paul Aldus

Paul is a former Detective Inspector with over 31 years’ service. He is a qualified National Police Trainer and holds an Adult and Further Education Teachers Certificate. He continues to deliver training to professionals in the field of Safeguarding, Child protection, Multi-agency responses to the investigation & management of child death and related areas. Click To Find Out More

Paul has a wealth of experience in this field to draw upon as an investigator, trainer and manager. A career detective for many years he specialised in public protection heading both child abuse investigation teams and public protection units. A qualified Senior Investigating Officer (SIO) he led homicide and other major investigations in this area. He concluded his police career as head of the constabulary’s investigative training department, overseeing all detective training and personally delivering the national training for S.I.Os.

His extensive experience in the multi-agency and training arena includes:

  • Participating in a variety of local, regional and national level working groups and involvement at a strategic level in relation to policy and protocol development in a number of areas.
  • Being a member of five Local Safeguarding Children Boards, Vulnerable Adult Safeguarding Boards, chairing both LSCB sub groups (including the training sub groups) and Level 2 Multi-agency Public Protection Risk Management Conferences in relation to dangerous and registered sex offenders.
  • Responsible for the investigation and writing of individual management reviews and as a member of LSCB overview in relation to Serious Case Reviews (SCRs) including overseeing the implementation of the resultant recommendations.
  • Involved in the research and innovation, of The Avon and Somerset Multi-agency Protocol for the Management and Investigation of Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy. He chaired the multi-agency working group responsible for the development and implementation and was jointly responsible for writing the document. This has been adopted nationally and forms the statutory guidance within ‘Working Together to Safeguard Children.’
  • Closely involved with the planning and development of national, general and advanced multi-agency training materials and courses for the interagency investigation and management of sudden unexpected death in childhood on behalf of the relevant Government department. As a Member of the faculty at Warwick University he has assisted in the delivery of the this national course on numerous occasions and as member of the faculty at Bristol University he has taken part in the delivery of the advanced course for the multi-agency rapid response to unexpected childhood death teams.  


Phil Smith

Phil has 20 years’ experience in safeguarding/child protection social work and management. Since 2008 he has been involved in writing and delivering safeguarding training to social workers and social work managers, foster carers and other staff in the roles of Service Manager Quality Development, Service Manager Child Protection and latterly as Safeguarding Manager. Prior to this he was an operational social worker and manager and spent some time seconded to strategic development projects. Click To Find Out More

Phil has delivered Learning Lessons from Serious Case Reviews briefings on behalf of the local safeguarding children board and on behalf of his last employer. Phil’s safeguarding training has always been designed to encourage discussion and debate, assisting participants to explore the issues and build on their own experience in the belief that child protection and safeguarding are subjects that require continuous reflection and study. His most recent work on safeguarding training has been to update it in line with the new Working Together to Safeguard Children 2013.

Phil‘s safeguarding training draws on his knowledge and experience of serious case reviews. The training explores the context (legal, procedural, serious case review material), the s47 process, and thresholds in safeguarding and analysing risk. Phil has also managed the complaints process, supporting independent investigators and organising stage 3 complaint review panels. He has recently developed and delivered complaints training. The training explored the legal, regulatory and organisational context, examined the complaints process, explored the difference between a concern, a complaint and an allegation and looked practically at how to respond to a complaint.

Phil’s training uses a variety of different methods;

  • Power point presentation.
  • Group exercises
  • Individual case study work
  • Group case study work
  • Group discussion

Throughout the training he always encourages questions, open discussion and debate.

Phil has a degree in German Studies (University of Lancaster 1985), Master of Social Science (University of Birmingham 1994) Diploma in Social Work (CCETSW 1994), Postgraduate Diploma in Leadership and Management for Social Work (University of Birmingham 2010) and Post Qualifying (Higher Specialist) Award in Leadership and Management for Social Work (University of Birmingham 2012.



Peter Norris

Peter has had a background with different central government departments with posts in the investigative and assessment field. Peter started his own consultancy company in the early 1990s working mostly with local authority social services and children’s charities. He trains managers in complaints investigations and social workers in appearing in court. Click To Find Out More

Peter has been a magistrate for over 20 years, chairing Family Panels for some 15, as well as chairing various ad-hoc local panels. He primarily investigates serious complaints against children’s services across England and Wales, reviews child protection policies, carries out case reviews, chairs disciplinary reviews, serious case reviews and complaints panels. In the past he has been a locum manager for the Children’s Society and Voice, been one of the chairs of the Welsh Assembly’s Independent Secretariat, been a regional delegate in the ill-fated divorce law review and a member of the local government standards tribunal. Peter is also a member of Employment Tribunals.


Ursula Norris

Ursula qualified at Southampton University 25 years ago and has a qualification from UWE in management. She has been successively a probation officer, social worker, senior and team manager, ending her career in local government as a unit manager at a secure unit. She now trains managers in complaints handling, social workers in court skills and acts as a management mentor. Click To Find Out More

Ursula is currently a partner in a consultancy, mostly in children’s services. Her career also involved training in child protection and she has mentored social work students. She has given evidence at courts in England and the Republic of Ireland and is a fluent French speaker.


 Guy Woodward

Guy qualified as a Solicitor and subsequently became a Senior Partner in the Law practice founded by his father, Douglas Mowbray Woodward. He has worked as a criminal solicitor and family solicitor, specialising in care cases and becoming one of the first solicitors to become a member of the Law Society’s specialist children’s panel. Click To Find Out More

In this role, Guy represented children in care proceedings over many years involving hundreds of cases undertaking his own advocacy in Family Proceedings Court (Magistrates), Care Centres (County Courts) and High Courts. He has represented children, children’s guardians, parents and grandparents in care cases, as well as Local Authorities in complex care proceedings.

Guy has also served as President of Bath Law Society, a Chair of Bath and District branch of NSPCC, and a member of The Bishop of Bath and Wells Child Protection Committee. He is a member of Lawyers for Children Organisation and a committee member of the Forever Friends Committee of the Royal United Hospital, Bath. 

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