Edward Timpson announced as new Cafcass Chair

Chief Executive Anthony Douglas welcomes new appointment on behalf of Cafcass.

Edward Timpson CBE has been appointed as the new Chair of Cafcass. His appointment will begin on 9th April, running to 8th April 2021.

The former MP for Crewe and Nantwich (2008-2017) held roles as the Minister of State for Children and Families (2015-2016) and Minister of State for Vulnerable Children and Families at the Department for Education (2016-2017). He was also the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Children and Families between 2012 and 2015.

Before entering Parliament, Edward spent ten years working as a family law barrister specialising in children’s cases. Growing up, his family fostered 90 children over 30 years and he has two adopted brothers.

Edward replaces Baroness Tyler of Enfield whose six-year tenure ended last week.

Cafcass’ Chief Executive Anthony Douglas welcomed Edward’s appointment:

“We are looking forward to working with Edward on issues affecting not just Cafcass but the whole of the family justice system. It was great working with him as a Minister and the whole of Cafcass is delighted with his appointment, coming on top of our outstanding rating from Ofsted. Edward’s personal and professional background, added to his political nous, will help us to keep growing and developing as a voice of the child-based service.”

Edward Timpson CBE said:

“I’m thrilled to take on the role of Chair of Cafcass, an organisation I’ve been involved with all the way from my family fostering whilst growing up to my time as Children’s Minister. As a former family law barrister I know just how complex and crucial the work of Cafcass is. I’m looking forward to supporting all those who help provide an outstanding service for children in need of our help, as well as ensuring Cafcass is at the forefront of the innovation and positive reform needed in our family justice system.”

Baroness Tyler said:

“I wish everyone the very best for the next stretch of Cafcass’ journey and the challenges and opportunities it will bring. I am sure Edward will be as proud to hold the role as I have been, and I look forward to following the organisation and the Board as they continue to grow on the next leg and strengthened by Cafcass’ latest Ofsted achievement.”


Cafcass recommendations “short of physically forcing child to attend contact with parent, the only way this can be achieved is by waiting for the child to be ready. The court may wish to consider the need for a psychological assessment to explore the issue of parental alienation, this would cause delay. The parent requested Parental Alienation Pathway be followed, however this process isn’t in place yet, indirect contact to continue with encouragement to respond”
So Cafcass haven’t done anything to recognise parental alienation and are doing nothing to restore the relationship between parent and child. Why are they not accountable for their actions? Any case with signs of PA should immediately be transferred from Cafcass to qualified psychologists in the first instance from a judge. Enforcement of orders should be paramount. The whole system is rotten to the core, god knows what society we will have in a couple of years time, as more and more children are denied access to both parents . I weep and implore this organisation to do better for our children.

My worry is with all that experience in fostering he may be thinking that is the way forward for children from broken homes, or where the parents are falling out who may lack the skills necessary to continue parenting adequately and with confidence. That is not what we need. We need somebody from a stable functional family background where both birth parents are considered important to the child’s upbringing. We need special relationships within the birth family to be prioritised, nurtured and sustained, backed up by Government departments who would prefer to sort out the family dynamic and be “parental alienation” aware, rather than turn a blind eye to the realities of family break up. The current tendency, exacerbated by the court process, of sourcing alternative family arrangements either through splitting the parents into good parent/ bad parent ideology or by State takeover is detrimental to our society.

Oh dear oh dear oh dear.
Timpson, former family law barrister…..a man that has made thousands up thousands of pounds through children’s misfortune. A former family law barrister who knows what goes on in the circuit and knows that many within the circuit, cannot tolerate CAFCASS. A man whose family have also made thousands and thousands of pounds through the twisted foster care system….yes, a very profitable scheme once you get into it.
A man, that as a MP, quite often had to deal with both genders of parents and their horrific issues with CAFCASS. A man, that with his other colleagues in the house who are also fully aware of the horror stories of CAFCASS, that could have got together with his fellow MP’s and took a stance against CAFCASS, but no, money talks regardless.
This is NOT a positive step for any child going through the twisted and corrupt family court circuit. The corruption is deep….much deeper than many could ever imagine. Only those that have been in the system, know how bad it is. Professionals such as solicitors and barristers and council employed social workers, slating the work of Cafcass and saying they are inept and not fit for purpose….yet they continue to promote this misfortune.

Maybe as that we can now see a male in the chair, maybe now, CAFCASS will accept that males can also be victims of domestic abuse and that they will now put together a DVPP for females. Now that would be revolutionary eh!


I totally agree with Florence’s comments, beautifully written. For those of Cafcass who aren’t aware Hostile parenting or Parental Alienation – a parent who will try to turn the children against the other parent will;
Stop contact despite court orders
Denigrate the other parent in front of anyone who will listen, including the children. Calling that parent derogatory names in front of the children
File allegations of abuse
Stop contact between the children and the other parents extended family, friends or anybody who disagrees with them
Believe they are above the law and that all orders were made for everyone but not them
Impeding communications with the children including blocking the other parent access to school records, meetings and events
Grilling the children about their visit and asking the children to spy or collect evidence
Statements of constant hatred and vengeance about the other parent
Continually referring to the children as their own children and not the other parent
Continually not enforcing the visitation with the other parent by claiming the children do not want to go and use the excuse that they are not going to force the children to go to see the other parent if they don’t want to
Making the children feel emotionally responsible for the parents happiness
Lying or even involving the children in court proceedings. Discussing with and involving the children in court matters or financial matters which they shouldn’t be involved in
Preventing the children from contacting the other parent by pulling the phone out of the wall, refusing to allow them to accept calls, refusing to allow them to make calls or not answering the phone when calls are made
When the children are allowed to skype or speak to the other parent on the phone they will oversee the call, instructing the children what to say and how to respond and force the end of the call if either child or other parent fails to conduct the call in the manner they deem appropriate
Feel it is their right to be late when the children are supposed to visit the other parent at a certain time or on a certain day but insist the children MUST be returned to them at the exact time the contact is supposed to end
Chose to have other people look after the children and not use the other parent
Make the children feel guilty if the want to see the other parent
Not permit the other parent to communicate with the”professionals” who support them
Remove pages or books from the children’s school bag so that the other parent is out of touch with studies
Lie to the children about the separation by giving details that are “obviously” untrue which deliberately impede the children’s behaviour to love the other parent
Involve the children in all aspects of the separation while claiming the children have a “right” to know what’s happening
Claim the other parent is victimising, stalking, abusing or harassing them. Repeatedly, filing false allegations of the abuse with the police in order to constantly torment the other parent with investigations
Encourage the children to make false accusations
Use bribery and enticements to prevent the children visiting the other parent or plan an event at the same time as visitation to make the children feel guilty if they go with the other parent
Not allow the children to have photos or objects from the other parent in the house, they will destroy any gifts or photos if the children brings them home
Tell the children that “they hope they will be okay” when they visit the other parent and they “hope they don’t end up in hospital” during a visit
Refuse the children’s request to spend extra time with the other parent even if this is for a special occasion
Will express a desire for the other parent to be dead, die, killed or severely injured
The parent has submitted false statements to the police about the other parent
Refused to share prescribed medication with the other parent during visitation

What’s done can’t be undone so let’s all press him for change repeatedly.
The family justice system is broken. I have never known so much parental alienation which is by the way child abuse without question. As a seasoned professional I am staggered that parents find themselves locked into the madness of court for years without even seeing their children subject to psy assessments by clinicians, questioned, made to attend vile stigmatising contact centres watched over like criminals and observed like animals in a zoo. I’ve worked in this environment for 35 years and am heart broken at the distress we collectively heap on firstly the children and alienated parents. The system is broken. I’m also fed up of hearing about Timpson’s association with fostering. So what? Thousands of amazing foster carers don’t get celebrated. What does he want a pat on the back. He will be even worse for business. So Mr Timpson I’m going to send you a letter and ask what reforms you are going to be putting in place to stop the circus of years of court proceedings for alienated parents and their children. Children deserve better and more. The End.

Mr Timpson, I would certainly like to comment on your strategy that innovates and captures the reforms of the family justice system, if one exists. There is too much talking and not enough doing. The family justice system isn’t the only one that needs to addressed and this cannot be done in isolation.It is the policy behind these systems that needs to be addressed and that includes from the start; the registration of birth, education, the divorce/separation, mediation, parental alienation, child benefit, child maintenance, universal credit. Children are not able to determine their wants and wishes and this barbaric and cruel act should be very clearly analysed against the impacts it has on families and extended families. The family court should be transparent in their hearings. Public records shared across courts as it is a postcode lottery of what judge decides the contact for a parent, what CAFCASS officer you get and what solicitor determined on the client they are representing whether they believe in Parental Abuse. Professionals in my opinion are all out to make as much money as they possibly can, and drag it out for as long as they can, completely ignoring the children at the heart of all this agro.

Agree totally with Marks comments! Very sad day indeed! His track record is awful… frying pan into fire!!

I hope someone within the Cafcass corrupt network really understand what a failing organisation Cafcass actually is.
The stories I read every day are heart breaking. You continuously get it wrong every time. You base your section 7 reports on what you believe not on facts or evidence.
Children are being put in danger!!!
I don’t agree with parental alienation, but when a parent has been abusive towards a child mentally or physically they should loose their rights.
Domestic abuse is serious, but it seems to have been brushed under the carpet. WHY??? IT’S A CRIMINAL OFFENCE. most family law cases should be thrown out and be seen as criminal law!
So my advice to you cafcass is no matter how many OBES or other fancy titles you might have, you are not qualified to deal with every case. So pass them on to someone that does. Otherwise more children and good parents will end up dead!

I am so hoping that someone with your vast experience will address parental alienation – unfortunately the training and the high conflict pathway has not reached your people who are representing children and therfore their true feelings are not being heard. Vulnerable children in high conflict situations, where there are no safe guarding issues should not be given the responsibility of choice as to whether they see a non resident parent. Can you imagine the anxiety this would cause them if they had to return to an angry disappointed resident parent and say I told cafcass I wanted to see my dad! (I only say dad as in most cases it is I do appreciate it is sometimes mom) These children are in a no win situation and it must be stopped because it is damaging and harmful to their mental well being – I implore you please let these children have both parents in their lives. If you need any evidence please see the post on Facebook families need fathers dated 30/3/18 it is painful to read the stories detailed in the comments and proves cafcass has not addressed parental alienation

We believe this is very positive appointment and ask that Mr Timpson contact us as soon as possible. There is much work to do together.

a former barrister, but is he up to speed in #ParentalAlienation #AlienaciónParental #ParentalAlienación

Surely this should read “Edward’s personal and professional background, added to his political nous, will help us to keep growing and developing as a scream of the child-based service.”

Edward Timpson was wholly ineffective in his Ministerial role substantively demonstrated by his short tenure. He failed routinely to respond to substantive correspondence – choosing to ignore opportunities to engage & advance an argument.

Terrible news for children. I am sure CAFCASS will attract significant attention with this appointment.

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