Cheadle Hulme United Reformed Church Safeguarding Policy – updated JAN 2024 BSV

Cheadle Hulme United Reformed Church believes that the welfare of children/vulnerable adults is EVERYONE’S responsibility, particularly when it comes to protecting children/vulnerable adults from abuse.  Everyone within the church can help, staff or volunteer – Ministers, Elders, Members, friends and children themselves.  Abuse can occur wherever there are children/vulnerable adults – at home, at church, at school, in the park.  Sadly, some people will seek to be where children /vulnerable adults are, simply in order to abuse them.   We believe that those belonging to the U.R.C. and everyone using the church premises have a moral responsibility and therefore a part to play in looking after the children and vulnerable adults with whom we are working.   To this end we have appointed safeguarding officers (see Appendix 2).

The Children Act 1989 indicates that anyone who has responsibility for the care of children should “do what is reasonable in all circumstances for the purpose of safeguarding or promoting the child’s welfare.”  While the welfare of young people is the churches first consideration in establishing a child protection programme it is also seen that the interests of leaders themselves need to be taken into account, particularly when falsely accused. These child protection procedures stem from the following principles:

  • The child’s welfare is paramount
  • Anyone under the age of 18yr is classed as a child
  • All children, regardless of age, any disability they have, gender, racial origin, religious belief and sexual identity and/or social/economic status have a right to be protected from abuse.
  • Abuse can take the form of physical, sexual, material, discriminatory, emotional and neglect.
  • Respect and promote the rights, wishes and feelings of young people in line with the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
  • Sometimes, people over 18yrs are vulnerable and must be treated with similar considerations as under 18yrs.

Cheadle Hulme United Reformed Church recognises that some children and vulnerable adults have additional vulnerabilities or are disadvantaged by their experiences such as children with disabilities or who come from minority ethnic groups.  Bearing in mind that children and young people can be and are disadvantaged by these and other experiences, it is important for all those that work with children to be extra vigilant in creating a safe culture.  We know that if the procedures are to help to protect children, everyone involved needs to see and discuss them.   All organisations, groups or hirers using Cheadle Hulme United Reformed Church Premises must abide by this policy and their own procedures.  The hire form includes a declaration signed and returned by the responsible person.


(a)       As far as possible a worker should not be left alone with a child, young person or vulnerable adult. Groups may work in the same large room or if in an adjoining room, the door should be left open. This benefits the worker as much as the vulnerable person

(b)        Workers should not arrange to meet with children, young people or vulnerable adults off the URC premises without a parent/guardian/adult carer present.

(c)        Follow the guidelines for ratios of workers to children, young people and vulnerable adults.  (See Appendix 1)

(d)       If transporting by car arrange as far as possible to have more than one passenger in the vehicle and children seated in the back.  If transporting by minibus arrange as far as possible to have more than one passenger in the vehicle with an adult seated in the back with the children.

(e)        Only allow children, young people or vulnerable adults to leave the Church premises in the presence of an adult known to have permission to accompany them.

(f)         It is good practice to record activities.  This record should include a register of children and staff and details of any significant incidents.

(g)        If any form of physical support is required ask the Child / Vulnerable adult permission, explain what you are doing and why to them and their parents/carers

(h)        Where possible ask parents/carers to be responsible for children/vulnerable adults in changing rooms. Always ensure that whoever supervises young people work in pairs

(i)         Where there are mixed teams/groups away from home, they should always be accompanied by an adult male and female helper

(j)         All workers and leaders must have appropriate DBS checks    


Appendix 1

Ratios of adults to children and/or vulnerable adults; (where possible, a minimum of 2 adults present)

0-2 years                           1 adults to three children

2-3 years                           1 adults to four children

3-7 years                           1 adults to eight children

8 years and over            Two adults (preferably one of each gender) for one to twenty children

Three adults for twenty one to thirty children

Four adults for over thirty-one children.


Appendix 2

The CH URC Safeguarding Officers are:

           –  vacant

           – Alison Stevens                       01652 877 180                   [email protected]      

…who are members of  Cheadle Hulme United Reformed Church who may be approached with any concerns.

Update SEP 2023 ~Elders


Appendix 3


SAFEGUARDING CONTACT LIST  (to be displayed appropriately)


Safeguarding Co-ordinator             Vacant                             …Contact Secretary

Secretary                   Alison Stevens                   01625 877 180                     [email protected]

URC N W Synod Safeguarding Officer         Julie Rafferty        07376 053 044    [email protected]

see Appendix 4

LOCAL AUTHORITY Designated Officer, LADO     0161 474 5657


The Safeguarding Unit –

Senior practitioner/Duty Social Worker                    0161 474 5657

Out of hours & weekend                                                0161 718 2118 Children’s Social Care

Team                                                                                  0161 217 6028

Adult Social Care Team                                                 0161 217 6029

Multi-Agency Safeguarding & Support Hub, MASSH     0161 217  6028 /6160

Local Safeguarding Board, LSB                         


Police emergency                                                            999   or      112

Police non-emergency                                                   101

Stockport Police                                                             0161 872 5050

NHS Helpline                                                                  111

Extremism Concerns (government helpline)          0207 340 7264


Ofsted (Office for Standards in Education)             0300 123 1231

Healthwatch Stockport                                                0161 974 0753

Age UK Stockport                                                         0161 480 1211

Signpost for Carers                                                      0161 442 0442

Disability Stockport                                                     0161 480 7248

or                                                                                     07951 285809

Stockport Advocacy                                                     0161 480 8979

See also our church Safeguarding Policy:                BSV Jan 2024


Appendix 4


Safeguarding Contacts: Yvette Hansbury-Robinson is the Synod Safeguarding Officer.

For General safeguarding queries, relating to safeguarding training, DBS and the annual church safeguarding returns, please email the safeguarding team on [email protected]

For queries relating to safeguarding policy & procedure and safeguarding allegations/ concerns, please contact Yvette on: Email: [email protected]  Mobile: 07827 390299