The NSP is a group of independent safeguarding experts drawn from a mix of legal, policing, social work, offender management and sport administration backgrounds.
Stephen Bellamy James QCNSP President
Stephen is a barrister in practice. He is a recognised expert in family law, and in particular children’s work and has over thirty years experience in the safeguarding and protection of children.
He sits as a deputy high court judge and a recorder. He is a trustee of Wooden Spoon, the children’s charity of rugby.
Jane AldredSpecialist Member
Jane Aldred is a solicitor at Switalskis LLP in Leeds. She specialises in family law, particularly children’s work and is qualified for the Law Society’s Children Panel.
She is a former grade 1 table official for basketball, chair of the Appeals Panel for England Basketball and a former school governor
Katherine AppsLegal Member
Katherine Apps is a barrister practising from 39 Essex Chambers in London. She has experience of safeguarding in the sporting context.
Her practice spans sports, regulatory, disciplinary, employment, public and equality law and domestic and international human rights.
She is currently a member of the Board of Appeal of Table Tennis England.
Elizabeth BehnkeSpecialist Member
Liz is a Safeguarding in sport specialist, she has worked with many governing bodies developing and growing their safeguarding structures, systems, processes and case management
She is also an experienced safeguarding trainer working from grassroots upwards.
John Bevan QCLegal Member
John worked as a Criminal barrister between 1970 and 2004. He was a member of Treasury Counsel at the Central Criminal Court 1983-1997 and then took Silk in 1997
He was also a Crown Court Recorder 1983-2004 and was then appointed a Circuit Judge in 2004. He was the Resident Judge at Luton Crown Court 2005-2011 before being appointed a Senior Circuit Judge, sitting at the Central Criminal Court 2011-2017.
John also sat as an occasional member of the Court of Appeal Criminal Division 2007-2017 before retiring in September 2017.
John has been a Bencher of Middle Temple since 2001. His sporting interests include rugby, cricket, rowing and tennis.
Jane Bickerstaff QCLegal Member
Jane has practised as a criminal Barrister since 1989 and took Silk in 2012. This practise has regularly brought her into contact with safeguarding matters.
Jane sits on disciplinary panels and safeguarding panels for the RFU and England Boxing. She also regularly chairs special panels for the FA.
Jane provides advice to individuals and organisations in relation to safeguarding issues.
Stephen BinksSpecialist Member
Steve is a retired Detective Chief Inspector who has worked in all areas of Major Crime Investigation.
He has investigated numerous serious, high-profile and complex cases and led them to a successful conclusion.
His experience also includes delivering training to Safeguarding Professionals involving Manslaughter by Gross Negligence of vulnerable adults.
Steve is currently employed as a civilian lead investigator on a high profile case.
Steve BoocockSpecialist Member
Steve Boocock is a county sports partnership manager and child protection in sport expert.
He was the first director of the NSPCC Child Protection in Sport Unit.
He is a former probation officer with experience of risk management and assessment of offenders.
He has extensive experience of the provision of community based treatment programmes for sexual offenders.
Martyn BurrellSpecialist Member
Martyn is a qualified social worker with a strong background in child protection and safeguarding.
He has 26 years experience of working with Local Authorities, both as a social work practitioner, specialising in risk assessment and planning, and as a senior manager for safeguarding.
During this period he has worked closely in multi agency partnerships and with Safeguarding Boards, developing responses to public protection issues and complex safeguarding.
More recently he has been working as a safeguarding advisor in faith and sports settings.
Carol ChamberlainSpecialist Member
Carol Chamberlain is a retired senior police officer who has 32 years policing experience specialising in all aspects of public protection notably safeguarding children, vulnerable adults, domestic abuse, rape and serious sexual assault.
She has acted as an independent consultant to the Home Office and Department for Health on public protection matters.
She is also a former lead officer for safeguarding children in golf.
Richard Desjardins Specialist Member
Richard is a registered social worker who has worked with children and families since 1982. His experience is in child protection and safeguarding work, including managing investigations, chairing Child Protection conferences, investigating complaints and disciplinary matters, and conducting investigations into staff and high-profile individuals.
He has worked in the statutory and voluntary sectors, working very closely with families and children to understand and respond to their needs and wishes, and managing significant levels of risk.
From 2012 to 2019 he was the Safeguarding manager at the England and Wales Cricket Board, where he made great strides in promoting a child-friendly approach to children in the game. Whilst at the ECB he integrated safeguarding training into coach education, introduced online DBS checks, trained and supported the Case Management Group and oversaw the review and re-writing of the organisation’s procedures for investigating safeguarding concerns and managing safeguarding risks.
Martyn DewSpecialist Member
Martyn Dew is a recently retired Police Officer.
His last position was Detective Superintendent Head of Public Protection for Gwent Police where he was responsible for child protection, vulnerable adults, domestic abuse, sex offenders, rape and other serious violent crime.
He has chaired numerous multi-agency groups in the field of child protection and has undertaken the Senior Investigating Officer role in a number of complex child abuse enquiries.
He has been the management author of a number of Serious Case Reviews involving both the deaths and serious abuse of children.
He is involved in the sports of tennis, squash, equestrian and clay pigeon shooting.
Michelle DraperSpecialist Member
Michelle Draper is a qualified social worker with experience of working in the area of Safeguarding of Children.
Michelle Draper also has experience as a Police Officer for over 13 years.
Her current role is the interim CEO for the National Ice Skating Association (NISA), where she is also the lead officer for Safeguarding.
Hannah DunneSpecialist Member
Hannah Dunne is a qualified Social Worker with 14 years experience in frontline Children Social Care and more recently the Youth Offending services.
Hannah currently chairs the Safeguarding Review Panel for The Football Association and also sits on the Safeguarding Case Management Team with The British Equestrian Federation.
Keith EldridgeSpecialist Member
Keith Eldridge is a retired police officer with the Metropolitan Police Service.
He is a former chair of a Multi-Agency Risk Management Panel and senior investigating officer for homicide investigation.
He is also a former elite athlete in the sport of Judo and competed Nationally and Internationally winning the World Police and Fire Games title in 1999.
Keith retains an involvement in the sport of Judo and is the British Judo Association Safeguarding Manager.
Ben EwartSpecialist Member
Ben Ewart has undertaken a variety of investigative and leadership positions within the police service, including Detective Chief Inspector and Senior Investigating Officer for safeguarding and serious and organised crime.
He has led a number of complex and sensitive enquiries, including child abuse and homicide investigations, as well as facilitated in the training of senior Detectives.
Ben is an experienced MAPPA chair and lead for multi-agency safeguarding and crime panels.
In addition to his police service Ben is the Director of a performance and assessment consultancy, working UK-wide.
Melissa HagueSpecialist Member
Melissa is currently a Specialist Advisor and Consultant for Sport, working in Case Management, Safeguarding, Governance and Senior Leadership.
She was previously the Interim COO, Head of Governance, Risk & Compliance and Lead Safeguarding Officer for Basketball England.
Melissa has recently won the award for Compliance Officer of the Year, 2018.
Melissa is a member of the National Case Management Strategic Group and sits on the Panel of Arbitrators and Mediators for Sports Resolutions on the National Safeguarding Panel and Integrity and Discipline Panel as a Specialist Arbitrator and Mediator.
Melissa has an extensive background in Safeguarding, Case Management and Senior Leadership in both the USA and the UK in Education, Healthcare and Sport.
Colin JonesSpecialist Member
Colin is a qualified social worker with 24 years experience of working in social care which has included residential child care, local authority management and senior management.
He has worked in a range of settings to help strengthen safeguarding partnerships, encouraging greater alignment to quality assurance and audit frameworks.
He has provided safeguarding advice to a number of sports clubs, supporting them to write and embed their child protection processes.
Colin also sits on the Safeguarding Panel of the Football Association.
Peter KeenSpecialist Member
Peter Keen is a former Senior Police Officer. He retired from Gwent Police in 2015 having served as Chief Superintendent, Head of Service Development and Head of Crime.
Peter has worked in the public protection field for many years. He has led complex child abuse and vulnerable adult investigations and contributed to local safeguarding activity through membership of Local Safeguarding Children's Boards, Community Safety Partnerships and Youth Offending Team Management Boards.
Peter has also worked with Mind Cymru, developing responses to mental health crisis and welfare support for Blue Light Organisations.
Sara LewisLegal Member
Sara Lewis in a barrister in practice at Nine St John’s Street, in Manchester.
She specialises in all aspects of child care law, adult protection and capacity, mental health and professional discipline. She sits as deputy coroner for the City of Manchester.
Prior to coming to the Bar, Sara was a neuropsychologist.
Greig LloydSpecialist Member
Greig is a former Metropolitan Police detective specialising in the areas of Safeguarding, Community Safety and Risk Management. Vastly experienced across multi agency focused investigations, case reviews and panel hearings.
He is now providing investigative services within the private sector to clients in the legal, sports and media industry nationwide and overseas. He is an independent investigator in Safeguarding to multiple clients including Premier League football teams, local authorities and independent care facilities.
Greig is very passionate about most sports, both participating and spectating. His football and rugby playing days are a thing of the past, and is now a very keen golfer.
James MaySpecialist Member
James has been working as Social Worker in Safeguarding for nearly two decades in a range of roles.
Most recently he has been working as a consultant with a range of statutory and 3rd sector organisations supporting them with safeguarding issues.
James has 15 years experience in safeguarding in sport working from club to national governing body level again in a range of roles including investigation, training and decision making.
Fenella Morris QCLegal Member
Fenella Morris is a barrister, practising since 1990. Her work includes professional discipline, health including mental health, education and equality law.
She has long experience of dealing with safeguarding issues, in relation to vulnerable teenagers and adults as well as younger children.
Helen MurdockSpecialist Member
Helen Murdock is a sports development consultant and trainer who specialises in the field of child safeguarding in sport.
She is retained by a number of sports to assist with their development of child protection policies and practice and is a member of England Hockey’s Safeguarding Disciplinary Panel.
She is the Safeguarding Manager for the UK School Games.
Deborah NicholsonLegal Member
Deborah Nicholson is an experienced lawyer and Head of Regulation at Markel Law. Her practice is focussed on health and social care, sport and education. Previously, she has undertaken contentious and non-contentious work for clients such as the GMC, NMC, CQC and Ofsted that often involved serious safeguarding concerns.
In relation to her safeguarding practice, she is regularly involved advising and representing organisations and individuals where concerns have been raised regarding their conduct. In a regulatory setting, she has prosecuted healthcare professionals where allegations have related to sexually motivated conduct concerning children and vulnerable adults. She has also defended healthcare organisations and individuals in the criminal courts for allegations of abuse/neglect. Deborah is a member of the RFU Safeguarding Panel and England Hockey’s Disrepute Panel.
Tim Owen QCLegal Member
Tim is a founding member of Matrix chambers and took Silk in 2000. He specialises in financial/business crime, public law, human rights, data protection/privacy law and sports law.
In addition to his practice at the Bar, he sits as a Deputy High Court Judge in the Administrative Court and is an Acting Judge of the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands.
His practice has a significant international dimension and he regularly appears in the higher courts in Hong Kong.
Stephen PearceSpecialist Member
Stephen is a retired Detective Constable having completed 30 years service with South Wales Police.
He has extensive investigative experience working in the Criminal Investigation Department, Child and Public Protection Unit and more recently Major Crime Investigations.
Stephen is a trained Family Liaison Advisor and Officer.
Stephen has played rugby for Bristol, Bridgend and represented the British Police, and also represented Wales Minor Counties, British Police and Glamorgan 2nd XI at Cricket.
Laura PotterSpecialist Member
Laura Potter has worked for the police service for the past 14 years in a variety of civilian Investigative roles including working as an Accredited Financial Investigator within a serious and organised crime unit.
She has worked on numerous sensitive and complex enquiries with vulnerable victims and witnesses.
Christopher Quinlan QCLegal Member
Christopher Quinlan QC is a Barrister, Recorder and a member of the Sport Resolutions Panel of Arbitrators.
In June 2016, Christopher was appointed to lead a review of the structure, composition and operation of the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) Disciplinary Panel, Appeal Board and Licensing Committee.
His final report, published in September of that year, received widespread industry support and the BHA accepted all of his recommendations. Christopher is World Rugby's Judicial Panel Chairman, the most senior judicial role within the sport.
Amongst other things, Christopher is responsible for the worldwide appointment and management of World Rugby's Judicial Committees, including the Rugby World Cup, for which he has served as a judicial officer at the last three tournaments.
Christopher sits on and chairs Football Association Appeal Boards and is a Specialist Member of the FA Judicial Panel. He is a legal member of both the National Anti-Doping Panel (NADP) and National Safeguarding Panel (NSP).
Amanda QuirkeSpecialist Member
Amanda Quirke is a qualified social worker specialising in the safeguarding of children.
She works for the NSPCC as the Service Manager of the Blackpool Delivery Team.
She also provides advice and support to governing bodies and sports clubs and is a member of the NSPCC led Child Protection in Sport Case Strategy Group.
Mary RobertsonLegal Member
Mary is an experienced child protection barrister.She represents children, parents, social workers, police and others in court proceedings involving the neglect and abuse of children, particularly in disputed applications to remove children from their families to place them with adopters or foster parents.
She has extensive knowledge of child safeguarding issues and procedures and of resolving disputes.
She also has experience of working in the public and political sectors, having previously worked in an advisory role in the House of Lords for 12 years. She is a rugby enthusiast.
Clement GoldstoneLegal Member
Clement worked as a Barrister between 1971 and 2002, taking Silk in 1993.
He specialised in Crime and Licensing [Liquor, Betting and Gaming] and over a period of 10 years from the late 1970s, was Standing Counsel to the Football League Executive Staffs Association, frequently advising and appearing for its members in connection with applications for unfair dismissal.
He was appointed as a Circuit Judge in 2002, before his appointment as a Senior Circuit Judge in 2011, when he became Resident Judge and Honorary Recorder of Liverpool, from which position he retired in April 2019.
He presided over, inter alia, a high-profile safeguarding case which led to a conviction concerning numerous offences. He also sat regularly as an additional Judge of the Court of Appeal [Criminal Division] between 2010 and 2019.
Clement was elected a Bencher of Middle Temple in 2004 and is to be Autumn Reader in 2020.
He has a keen and active interest in many sports and leisure activities, and is a regular golfer and bridge player.
Sharon ScotsonSpecialist Member
Sharon is a retired Detective Chief Inspector who has worked in the Public Protection Arena over many years.
As an experienced Senior Investigating Officer, she has investigated numerous serious and high-profile cases.
She has led teams of investigators in cases of Child Protection, Child Sexual Exploitation, Trafficking, Adult Abuse, Domestic Abuse, Rape and Serious Sexual Offences.
She has been a manager of a Serious Case Review Unit and a member of both the Manchester Child Death Overview Panel and MAPPA.
Sharon is currently employed as a lead investigator.
Michael SheathSpecialist Member
Michael qualified as a Social Worker in 1988, worked as a Probation Officer for ten years, and has worked for the Lucy Faithfull Foundation for twenty-one years.
He has worked with sexual offenders for all that time, acts as a trainer for Europol in relation to Indecent Imagery viewers, and has published research on that subject.
He Chairs the Football Association's Safeguarding Review Panel, is an accredited trainer for Safer Recruitment in Education, and is a qualified counsellor for ATSAC, the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Addiction and Compulsivity.
Iqbal Singh Specialist Member
Iqbal is a recently retired Detective Superintendent with 31 years of operational policing experience.
His last position was as the Director of Crime Academy for the Metropolitan Police Service where he was responsible for all detective and specialist training, including safeguarding, community safety and advance interviewing.
Iqbal worked in the Child Abuse Investigation Command for the MPS where he developed the safeguarding response for the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics. He is also the architect for Operation Limelight, the first ever airside multi agency response to FGM.
Iqbal currently volunteers as an Independent Visitor for the National Youth Advocacy Service. He enjoys reading and keeping fit.
Lance SpringSpecialist Member
Lance Spring is former senior manager and police officer with the Metropolitan Police Service where he specialised in the investigation of child abuse cases.
He is employed on a part-time basis as an independent child safeguarding advisor by the England and Wales Cricket Board and regularly undertakes investigations for other governing bodies and organisations into allegations of inappropriate behaviour.
Ann Stuart MBESpecialist Member
Ann’s experience in safeguarding comes from 18 years of her 34 years in the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) working in domestic abuse and child protection.
During that time she fulfilled three roles; firstly as a Detective investigating child abuse, then she became the first dedicated child protection policy officer in the MPS (developing the first police procedures for investigating child abuse which then informed the national guidance) and acted as policy advisor to the National Chief Police child protection sub group and finally training manager delivering numerous safeguarding training including specialist child interview techniques.
Since October 2014, Ann has been a self - employed safeguarding consultant and is currently an associate for Triangle services, Leonard consultancy, NSPCC and Zurich municipal Insurance. She continues to develop bespoke training for sport organisations and the voluntary sector and conducts frequent reviews of policy and procedures to ensure they are compliant with current legislation.
Ann’s CV is extensive relating to Safeguarding Children both from a policing perspective and more recently from a sport perspective, as she is the Safeguarding lead for a Martial Arts organisation. Ann’s work in child protection was recognised in 2014 when she received an MBE for services to Child Protection.
Phillip SycamoreLegal Member
Phillip practised as a solicitor from 1975 until 2001, specialising in regulatory and professional negligence work and acting as a Chair of the former Football League Arbitration Tribunal. In 2001 he was appointed as a Circuit Judge. He was President of the Law Society of England and Wales from 1997 - 1998 and since 2014 has been a Senior Judicial Appointments Commissioner.
In 2008, as a Circuit Judge, he was appointed as the Chamber President of the Health Education and Social Care Chamber (Mental Health, Care Standards, Special Educational Needs and Primary Health Tribunals jurisdictions) and subsequently, also as the Deputy Vice President of Tribunals. He retired in March 2020 and continues to sit as a Deputy High Court Judge and as a Judge of the Upper Tribunal.
His main sporting interests are rugby, football and golf.
Charles ThomasLegal Member
Charles is a Barrister who was called in 1990 and is a tenant at Guildhall Chambers, Bristol.
He is a criminal practitioner with an emphasis on sex offences, offences under the Modern Slavery Act and other offences against children, and is also a Grade 4 prosecutor.
Charles has been a Legally Qualified Chair at the MPTS since 2017, and was previously a Legal assessor at the GMC.
He is an Oxford Cross-Country blue and competed for Haringey AC. Charles is also a fully qualified ECB cricket coach.
Blondel ThompsonSpecialist Member
Blondel Thompson has been a practising barrister for 20 years specialising in crime and sports law and is a former international 100m hurdler.
Blondel has extensive experience of chairing disciplinary tribunals and in 1998 she became a panel member of the Disciplinary Tribunals of UK Athletics.
She is a Specialist Member of the Football Association's Judicial Panel and has chaired a number of FA Appeal Boards in that capacity. In 2010, Blondel was appointed as arbitrator for the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
David ThomsonLegal Member
David Thomson is a barrister, a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and a qualified medical doctor.
He is in practice at 1 Chancery Lane, London. He specialises in civil litigation, especially health care disciplinary matters and injury work.
He has chaired a number of disciplinary panels and appeal boards for governing bodies involving child protection and coach licensing issues.
Jason Tingley Specialist Member
Jason has 30 years’ experience as a police officer, more recently at an executive level as a Detective Chief Superintendent as head of Specialist Crime Command in a collaborative role across Surrey and Sussex Police. He is passionate about safeguarding and protecting the vulnerable, and as a former head of Public Protection in Sussex he has a broad range of investigative knowledge and experience, including areas such as child sexual exploitation and adult protection.
He was also a former member of Local Safeguarding Children’s and Adult Safeguarding Boards in Sussex, and chair of the local Safeguarding in Sport Board. He has a keen interest in all sports, in particular football and cricket’.
Nicola Tingley Specialist Member
Nicola is a fully qualified HR practitioner, in the last 20 or so years’ having worked in the public, private and charity sectors. She has extensive experience in guiding managers through statutory employment procedures and recommended good practice and supporting them with the practical steps of effective case management.
Nicola is currently managing internal investigations for a national charity, to help maintain high quality safeguarding services and social care for vulnerable adults and children. She stopped playing league netball at age 35 but try to keep fit and has since supported her children with their sports in dance, football and cricket.
Dr Neil TownshendSpecialist Member
Neil Townshend is a qualified doctor working in full time general practice.
He is a former British and North American Champion in the sport of luge, representing Great Britain at seven Olympic Games from 1980 to 1998 as competitor, team manager and doctor.
He is also a former vice chairman of the British Olympic Association, was Chief Medical Officer of the Federation International de Luge, and is a past chairman of the National Sports Medicine Institute.
Ian Unsworth QCLegal Member
Ian Unsworth QC is a Barrister and Recorder. He sits as a legal chair for the Football Association and Rugby Football Union. He also sits for the Premier League, 6 Nations and World Rugby.
He has acted for a range of elite athletes from the worlds of Cycling, Football, Cricket and Triathlon. He has appeared before both domestic tribunals and CAS.
In 2017 he chaired an independent investigation into Watford FC on behalf of the EFL. He has wide ranging experience in doping cases and whistle blowing.
Richard Walden Specialist Member
Richard is a retired police and law enforcement officer having worked with Gwent Police, National Crime Squad, Serious Organised Crime Agency and National Crime Agency.
Richard specialised in covert investigations within the UK and overseas, including experience of dealing with sensitive intelligence, bullying investigations, witness protection and post incident procedures and has worked with the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Team.
He has been a youth football coach, volunteer ski buddy for a disability ski trip and a volunteer swim instructor for disabled children. He continues to teach children to swim and works with UK Anti-Doping.
Richard is an avid sports fan both as a participant and spectator - especially rugby, football, skiing and golf.
Sam Warner Specialist Member
Dr Sam Warner is a consultant clinical psychologist and holds an honorary lectureship at Salford University. Sam has specialised in sexual violence, child protection, domestic abuse and mental health for over thirty years. She has written books and papers on sexual abuse and related issues, such as self-harm and psychosis. Sam works as an expert witness and has led a variety of specialist sexual violence therapy services in the third sector, mental health, child protection and child safeguarding, most recently in respect of girls at risk of sexual exploitation. Sam has also been engaged by the Department of Health and British Government on both national and international sexual violence projects.
She is on the board of directors of the Association of Child Protection Professionals charity and is the mental health consultant for the Frank Bruno Foundation.
Sally WernickSpecialist Member
Sally Wernick is strategic development lead in Adult safeguarding for a large local authority.
Sally has senior management experience in a variety of roles, and a background in criminal justice, child protection, inspection and regulation, community safety and Deprivation of Liberty safeguards.
A skilled investigator she has overseen large scale investigations and has been a panel member on Domestic Homicide and Safeguarding Adults Reviews.
Sally has a passion for all sports and is a keen triathlete, previously completing an Ironman 70.3.
Gemma White QCLegal Member
Gemma is a barrister in practice at Blackstone Chambers in London. She specialises in public law and has particular experience in matters relating to professional discipline, health and education.
Gemma is a longstanding governor of her local school, where she is link governor with responsibility for children with special educational needs.
Milly WildishSpecialist Member
Milly Wildish is a former Metropolitan police detective. She worked in safeguarding for 13 years, spending several years leading complex child abuse enquiries.
She is a former chair of the Multi Agency Sexual Exploitation panel and the high-risk adults panel.
Milly has sat on numerous Serious Case Reviews and Domestic Homicide Reviews. Milly is currently working as a Safeguarding Consultant for numerous organisations, including delivering safeguarding training on behalf of the General Medical Council and the Independent Safeguarding Service.
Lisa WilkinsSpecialist Member
Lisa Wilkins is a solicitor with experience of childcare in both private practice and Local Authority settings.
She is the Safeguarding Case Manager at the Football Association with responsibility for the development and running of both the Case Management Team and The FA Safeguarding Review Panel.
She has experience of conducting complex investigations and risk assessments into child safeguarding complaints and concerns in sport.
Ian WilsonSpecialist Member
Ian Wilson is a Director of England Hockey and Chair of its Safeguarding Case Management Panel.
He represents the governing body at all independent safeguarding disciplinary hearings.
He has been a member of Sport Resolutions’ National Safeguarding Panel since its inception in 2013 working across a range of sports.