LSCBLocal Safeguarding Children Board Northamptonshire

Designated Officer (formerly LADO)

The Designated Officer (formerly known as the Local Authority Designated Officer or LADO) should be informed of all cases in which it is alleged that a person who works with children has:

  • Behaved in a way that has harmed, or may have harmed, a child;
  • Possibly committed a criminal offence against children, or related to a child; or
  • Behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates they may pose a risk of harm to children, for example if their conduct falls within any of these categories of abuse:
    • Physical
    • Emotional
    • Sexual
    • Neglect

Allegations made against workers who are paid, unpaid, volunteer, agency, casual and self-employed as well as foster carers, and adoptive parents of children on Placement Orders should all be reported to the Designated Officer. This should be done within 24 hours of the incident.


Should you need to discuss a case with a Designated Officer, please contact us on the numbers below or alternatively, please complete consultation form here. For urgent child safeguarding matters please contract MASH directly on 0300 126 7000.

You can e-mail your query to and a Designated Officer will get back to you as soon as they are able to.


You can contact the Designated Officer for North Northamptonshire, Sheila Kempster on 07831 123193 or for West Northamptonshire, Andy Smith on 07850 854309.

Please contact LADO on Monday – Friday between 14:00 – 17:00. If you are unable to get through, please leave a message and they will get back to you as soon as they can. Alternatively, you can leave a message via voicemail on 01604 362993.

Making a referral to the Designated Officer

If you have concerns about an adult working with children or young people, please complete the referral form below:

Report a concern about an adult working with children

Once an allegation has been the Designated Officers role is to:

  • Capture and co-ordinate the sharing of all the information relating to the case with the officers and agencies that need to be informed.
  • Provide advice and guidance to the employers or voluntary organisation.
  • Monitor and track the progress of the case through to its conclusion, with the aim to resolve it as quickly as safely possible.

In addition to dealing with individual cases, Designated Officers must look at themes and emerging patterns of behaviour.


  • Referrals to the Designated Officer must be made within 24 hours of the incident.
  • The Designated Officer has 5 working days to respond to your referral..
  • It is our aim that allegations should be resolved within three months but, for complex cases or where investigations require significant time to resolve, this timescale may not be met.


Should you disagree with a decision made by the Designated Officer you should follow the NSCP Case and Conflict Resolution Procedure. The line manager for NCT’s Designated Officers is 


The Designated Officer is accountable to the NSCP and operates independently within Northamptonshire’s Children’s Trust to help safeguard children.

Statutory references:

The Designated Officer statutory guidance is set out in Chapter 2 of organisational responsibilities of Working Together to Safeguard Children and in keeping Children Safe in Education, as well as the Equality Act.


Please use the below link to provide feedback for the LADO service, this will then enable us to improve our service.

Designated Officer Feedback Form

Last updated: 12 July 2023

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