Rob Tyrrell, Principal Social Worker


Hi, I’m Rob Tyrrell, Principal Social Worker for children and families.

I started in various different forms in 1989 – that’s ages ago! I started working with Adults with learning disabilities in residential care. I managed some care homes for adults with learning disabilities and mental health problems. I then moved into children’s social care about 15 years ago. I worked with children in care, managed a children in care team and adoption team and now I’m Principal Social Worker.

I have always enjoyed supervision and when its been good, it has helped me make sense of the work I am doing – I found its really crucial and that has taught me a lot about how I support social workers through supervision myself.

I have really enjoyed having the opportunity to be in the position I’m in now, a Principal Social Worker. As PSW I have permission to ask questions, to encourage people to think about the way we do things and finding solutions. I have a great opportunity to work with people across the service and those who experience our services and to see if we can make a difference. We don’t always get it right but I think that’s part of the learning culture we are involved in. It’s an exciting thing to be part of.

When it comes to the challenges I have faced in my career so far, there isn’t one specifically but seeing how people were affected by our recent Ofsted inspection outcome and the learning and challenges we have had from that has been difficult but was also seen as an opportunity to look at ourselves and the way we work with each other and children and families. It may be a cliché but it’s a huge opportunity. I now face the challenge of trying to be focussed when there’s a lot of things to do at once. I, like our social workers, need to prioritise and understand what we need to do first and to make the best out of everything we do.

It is such an exciting time to become a part of Gloucestershire Children’s services. We have done a lot of thinking about how we do things, how we speak to each other and how we work with each other. This is a really good point to be thinking ‘yes, I would like to be here’.

The great thing about living and working in Gloucestershire is that it’s stunning. I’m a keen cyclist so the hills are GREAT! We have beautiful countryside and although it’s a huge county, it feels quite small, you get to know your way around. It really is a beautiful place to live.

If you work in GCC’s children’s services you will see a lot of me. I work with staff across the whole service from students, to Newly Qualified Social Workers, social workers, managers, right through to directors. I may not have a huge amount of influence all the time but I also have the ear of and am able to talk to lots of people across the service which a real privilege.

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