Safeguarding Policy Statement

We recognise that the welfare of all children, young people, and adults at risk, is paramount and that all have equal rights of protection. We have a duty of care when they are in our charge, and we will do everything we can to provide a safe and caring environment whilst they attend our activities.

Protecting people and safeguarding responsibilities is a governance priority for all charities. It is a fundamental part of operating as a charity for the public benefit. Our policy is approved by the Board of Directors and will be reviewed and updated annually. We will publish and promote this policy to our workforce, (Employees and working volunteers) through induction, training, and supervision. We endeavour to disseminate, as appropriate, this policy to all who come into contact with the East Lancashire Railway e.g., children, young people, adults at risk, their parents, carers, families, and others, such as organisational partners and fundraisers.

Mike Kelly

Chairperson of the board of directors.

June 2024

The purpose and scope of this policy statement

The ELR continually works with children, adults, and families through a range of activities:

  • Volunteering
  • Travel on the railway to see the activities of the charity.
  • Family activities
  • Events
  • Community engagement
  • Youth Groups
  • Local schools and colleges.

The ELR provides opportunities for children and adults to engage and aid the charity with its objectives undertaken on its land and within premises owned or leased by the ELR as well as partner organisations.

The purpose of this policy statement:

  • Create an organisational culture where safeguarding children, young people, and vulnerable adults that we work with (and who work with and for us) are valued, understood, and respected by everyone.
  • Protect children and adults at risk who use our services.
  • Provide parent, staff and volunteers with the overarching principles that guide our approach to child protection.
  • Ensure that staff and volunteers covered by this policy feel supported and comfortable dealing with safeguarding concerns and processes.
  • Stop and prevent abuse or neglect wherever possible.
  • Prevent harm and reduce risk of abuse or neglect to adults with care and support needs.
  • Promote the positive wellbeing of children and adults at risk.
  • Safeguard adults in a way that supports them in making choices and having control about how they want to live.
  • Raise awareness of safeguarding children and adults to ensure that everyone can play their part in preventing, identifying, and responding to abuse and neglect.
  • Provide information and support in accessible ways to help people understand the distinct types of abuse, how to stay safe and what to do to raise a concern about the safety or wellbeing of children and adults at risk.

This policy applies to anyone working on behalf of the ELR, including senior managers and the board of trustees, volunteers, sessional workers, agency staff, students, and trainees.

Roles and Responsibilities

  • Overview responsibility for safeguarding management is that of ELR Board of Trustees who appoint a Trustee lead for safeguarding.
  • Direct management and lead of the implementation of safeguarding policy and procedures and monitoring is through the ELR’s Safeguarding Team Chaired by the Designated Safeguarding Lead, supported by Senior Management, Designated Safeguarding Officers, and HR.
  • The Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL), and Designated Safeguarding Officers (DSO) will maintain up to date safeguarding information, proactively offer safeguarding training for staff and volunteers, and will be the key point of contact where safeguarding concerns are identified.
  • The Senior Management Team, and other Managers will proactively promote an approach of ‘professional curiosity’ within their teams, and a culture of proactive training and reporting.
  • Implementation of Safeguarding Policy and Procedure is the responsibility of all staff and volunteers.

Legal Framework

This Policy has been drawn up based on legislation, policy and guidance that seeks to protect children and adults at risk in England.


The Department for Education (DfE) is responsible for child protection in England. It sets out policy, legislation, and statutory guidance on how the child protection system should work. The key guidance for child protection is Working together to safeguard children (Department for Education, 2018). This states:

  • Everyone who works with children has a responsibility for keeping them safe.
  • Everyone who comes into contact with children and families has a role to play in sharing information and identifying concerns.

Definition of a Child

In England, a Child is defined as anyone not yet reached their 18th birthday. Child protection guidance points out that even if a child has reached 16 years of age and is:

  • living independently
  • in further education
  • a member of the armed forces
  • in hospital
  • or in custody in the secure estate, they are still legally children and should be given the same protection and entitlements as any other child

(Department for Education, 2018a).


The key guidance for adult safeguarding is the Care and Support Statutory Guidance issued under the Care Act (Department for Health and Social Care). Safeguarding guidance is provided in sections 42 to 46 of the Care Act 2014.

Safeguarding duties apply to adults at risk. Adults at risk are defined as individuals over eighteen who:

  • Have needs for care and support (whether the local authority is meeting any of those needs) and;
  • Is experiencing, or at risk of, abuse or neglect; and;
  • As a result of those care and support needs is unable to protect themselves from either the risk of, or the experience of abuse or neglect.

ELR believes that:

  • Children and adults at risk should never experience abuse of any kind.
  • We have a responsibility to promote the welfare of all children and adults at risk to keep them safe and to practice in a way that protects them.

ELR recognises that:

  • The welfare of the child or adult at risk is paramount.
  • All children and adults at risk, regardless of age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex, or sexual orientation, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy, and maternity, have a right to equal protection from all types of harm or abuse.
  • Some children and adults at risk are additionally vulnerable because of the impact of previous experiences, their level of dependency, communication needs or other issues.
  • Working in partnership with children and adults at risk, their parents, carers, and other agencies as appropriate is essential to promoting welfare.

ELR will seek to keep children and adults at risk safe by:

  • Valuing, listening to, and respecting them.
  • Appointing a designated safeguarding lead and a lead trustee for safeguarding.
  • Actively developing safeguarding policy, procedures, and guidance notes which reflect best practice.
  • Using our safeguarding procedures to share concerns and relevant information with agencies who need to know, and involving children, parents, families, and carers appropriately.
  • Creating and maintaining an anti-bullying environment and ensuring that we have a policy and procedure to help us deal effectively with any bullying that does arise.
  • Developing and implementing effective online safeguarding procedures.
  • Sharing information about child protection and safeguarding best practice with staff and volunteers via training, posters, team meetings, and supervision. Ensuring staff have clear procedures establishing accountability, responsibility, and processes for reporting safeguarding concerns.
  • Recruiting staff and volunteers safely, ensuring all necessary DBS checks are made where required.
  • Providing effective management for staff and volunteers through supervision, support, training, and quality assurance measures.
  • Implementing a code of conduct for staff and volunteers.
  • Using our procedures to manage any allegations against a trustee, employee, or volunteer appropriately.
  • Ensuring that we have effective complaints and whistle blowing measures in place.
  • Ensuring that we provide a safe physical environment for our children, adults at risk, staff, and volunteers, by applying health and safety measures in accordance with the law and regulatory guidance.
  • Recording and storing information professionally and securely in accordance with General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR)