A team built with experience in early years and childcare; and specialists in training, research and consultancy
What’s more, our team is 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 a government minister.
Select a staff member for more details:
James Hempsall OBE
Our Director, James Hempsall OBE, has worked in the sector for over 25 years. He is a former playworker, children’s centre manager, FE lecturer, development worker, and regional manager/senior projects manager for a national childcare charity. His career has been spent supporting organisations to develop high quality and sustainable childcare, and supporting families to break the cycles and symptoms of disadvantage and poverty.
James loves to deliver training, facilitate workshops, meetings and strategic discussions, that share ideas and work to useful and outcome focused solutions. He has an MA in the Ethics of Social Welfare and is a qualified teacher QTLS. James is currently studying for a second MA in psychodynamic counselling and psychotherapy.
James was the National Support Director of the DfE Achieving Two Year Olds national support programme for the implementation of early learning for least advantaged two-year-olds (2012-2016), and in addition to being Director of Hempsall’s is currently:
- National Programme Director – Childcare Works, the DfE national support programme for 30-hours of free childcare
- Chairperson of the charity that publishes the FREE quarterly journal Children’s Centre Leader
- Associate Analyst for DfE
Our Training Manager, Kate Haythornthwaite is a former childminder with a strong track record in adult education and joined Hempsall’s in 2006. Kate holds a Cert Ed and project leads our extensive training programme of CPD training, delivering approximately 100s of events each year. Leading a team of around 15 trainers Kate is responsible for learning outcomes, quality and our safeguarding and child protection work.
Kate is your first contact when you need training designed and delivered.
Our research manager, Barbara Wilson, has been with Hempsall’s since the start of the business in 1999, and has project managed all our research projects since. Barbara oversees all research activities and reporting and has worked on a wide variety of projects including: evaluation of children’s centres, value for money studies, assessment of traded services, qualitative and quantitative research and numerous childcare sufficiency and demand assessments. Barbara was lead for childcare sufficiency for several regional government office projects implementing Childcare Act (2006) duties for DfE, one of four region leads for Achieving Two Year Olds (A2YO), and is currently one of three Programme Advisers for Childcare Works, delivering support on behalf of DfE to implement 30-hours childcare.
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 leads on our business and management training and engagement with schools. Jo is a Childcare Works Programme Adviser covering the North of England and leading on provider work, and provides one-to-one support for local authority and provider implementation. Jo also leads on our business and management training.
Julie Crookes, our Development Officer, is a former Extended Services Co-ordinator, working with a cluster of 14 primary and secondary schools in Leicestershire. She holds Prince 2 Project Management qualification and, since joining Hempsall’s in May 2012, has managed the Time to Give parent volunteering project in Charnwood children’s centres in Leicestershire, before moving on to project managing the Paths to Work employability project across all children’s centres in the London Borough of Lambeth. In Lambeth, Julie works with parents of under-fives to improve their economic situations and routes through to employment, supported by accessing early learning and childcare entitlements. Julie also co-ordinates our larger national meetings for example, Childcare Works National PS Meeting.
Ros Moseley is a former childcare practitioner and is an experienced development officer specialising on working with early years and childcare businesses. Ros’ work includes the provision of advice and support to early years and childcare settings, including business planning, financial forecasting, funding applications, development of out of school childcare, and Ofsted requirements. She worked on the Hempsall’s support to voluntary sector early years settings in Northamptonshire for 10 years.
Jo Chapman, our Business Manager, has worked for Hempsall’s since 2000. Jo is an extremely experienced person in office management and administration having managed several office teams during her career. She is responsible for the business activities within the organisation and supervision of administration. Jo contributes to continuous improvement and development of processes and procedures. She leads our commitment to a systems approach benefiting internal and external service delivery, including our Quality Management System ISO 9001 2015.
Raxa Chauhan, our Administrative Coordinator joined Hempsall’s in 2012. Raxa has many years of experience in administration and has worked within the education sector. She assists and supports the Business Manager with the organisation’s training functions to ensure effective preparation, resourcing, delivery and evaluation of 100s of training sessions and events each year. Raxa also assists the Training Manager with the administration of safer recruitment and safe working practices such as the DBS.
Ann Van Dyke
Ann Van Dyke is our consultant, and currently Programme Adviser for our Childcare Works project. She has an extensive range of experience in childcare development and strategy, children’s centre delivery, and local authority change management. Ann worked regionally on the implementation of government policies for approximately eight years, supporting and challenging local authorities in delivery. Ann’s own local authority experience includes the implementation and management of Sure Start local programmes, early years and childcare services, children’s centres, extended services, family support, inclusion services, Family Information Services (FIS), play and services for families with multiple needs.
Nicola Blatchly-Lewis is a former strategic lead for early years and childcare supporting quality improvement across schools, PVI and childminding sector. She has been involved in early years since 1992. A qualified teacher, Nicola was the lead on early years and children’s centres during the development of SureStart. Nicola has lived and worked in the Middle East and Kazakhstan working on curriculum development and teacher training. She is an experienced trainer skilled in EYFS, child development, brain development with an interest in early language development. Nicola undertook the EYP status in 2008 and has qualifications in leadership and management. She is also an experienced moderator of EYFSP
Sufiyan Khalifa, Administrative Assistant, joined Hempsall’s through an apprenticeship placement, and college studies in 2015. He officially joined the team as a full time staff member in 2017. Sufiyan assists with the day to day smooth running of the organisation. His work includes assisting the training manager with quality assurance of documents, helping run our websites, as well as supporting one with the administration of the Lambeth Paths to Work employability project.