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Nottinghamshire Community Solutions Conference Panel

Updated: Jun 16, 2019

Working together to tackle youth violence, knife crime and gang activity.

The Nottinghamshire Community Solutions Conference (involving Parents, Carers & the Community) is sponsored by the Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner.

This solutions focused event is an interactive conference for parents, carers and the wider community in relation to weapon enable violence (specifically knife crime) and gang related activity amongst young people.

The conference will include two panels:

Panel 1: Senior representatives from the police, other statutory agencies, key services and experts; and

Panel 2: Parents and carers of young people who are involved in or on the periphery of knife crime or gang activity.

Discussion topics will include: exploring the underlying issues, the use of social media in relation to gang activity / violence, and hearing the voices of people from black and minority ethnic communities.

Panel members and special guests:

Conference host and chairperson

Professor Cecile Wright

Cecile was Professor of Sociology at Nottingham Trent University for 13 years and is currently at the University of Nottingham as an honorary academic and independent researcher. She was the first black female professor in the East Midlands. She specialises in the areas of education, youth, social mobility and social exclusion. She was recently engaged by the Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner to investigate the relationship between the BME community and the police with a view to producing recommendations to improve relations.

Cecile’s specialist subjects include: Education, health inequality, lifestyle, children/youth, family, welfare, women's interests, race relations, social class divide, community cohesion, politics and representation, crime and policing, American civil rights.

Community Panel (special guests).

Alex Beresford (ITV's Good Morning Britain)

Alex has been presenting the weather on ITV for over 10 years, starting out as a regional presenter in the West Country, before progressing to the National team where his responsibilities also include covering the breakfast forecasts for Good Morning Britain.

During a Good Morning Britain debate on knife crime, Alex Beresford made an off-camera interjection as the Police Federation chair, John Apter, was arguing for the need for more prisons.

Alex Beresford's cousin Nathaniel Armstrong was stabbed to death near his home in Fulham just 10 days after Alex intervened during the knife crime debate, arguing that building more prisons isn't the right way to tackle the epidemic.

Click here to see Alex’s recent report on knife crime


Sheldon Thomas is the CEO and consultant for Gangsline. Sheldon is a former gang leader who since leaving that life behind many years ago, is now a highly engaged and influential public services and corporate social responsibility liaison consultant with extensive experience, primarily focusing on gang behaviour, culture, social cohesion and economic suppression.

Gangsline provides a unique approach that offers support and exit strategies to young people at risk or involved in gangs.

Gangsline is a consultancy & training company specializing in the delivery of accredited gangs training for management and frontline professionals, offering strategic advice to government agencies.

Sheldon Thomas spent 6 years advising the Trident gang’s command (Specialist Met police unit) and sat on the roundtable discussion on gangs with the then home secretary Theresa May and Ian Duncan Smith delivering a robust and strategic approach to sustainably reducing gang member uptake and related crimes.


Dr Nadine Taylor is a HCPC Registered Clinical Psychologist with over 12 years’ experience working across mental health and forensic settings, working with people with a range of psychological difficulties. Nadine is a specialist in Trauma, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, substance misuse and challenging behaviour.

Nadine has a specialist interest in working with children and adults who have experienced complex trauma, have attachment difficulties, personality issues or working with those who engage in offending behaviour.

Marguerite Haye

Marguerite has been involved in teaching for over 15 years in various positions and sectors, including being Head Teacher at a Specialist School for Autistic children and young people.

Marguerite is knowledgeable in the SEND legislation she embraces its ethos at the heart of everything she does, by adopting a child-centred approach to ensure every child receives the right provision.

Marguerite works with various organisations; Associate Editor Special Needs Jungle, Head of SEND @Sunshine Support and a Volunteer for IPSEA.

Maria Rooney

Specialist Independent Social Worker & Children's Rights Advocate (Black Child Agenda).

Maria is a highly experienced Social Worker with 12 years substantial social work experience of working in Children's Social Care with high risk adolescents in care with significant emotional, behavioural & social difficulties (conduct disorders) & with young people who present with multiple/complex support needs.

Maria specialises in working with Black & mixed race children & young people bringing emotional intelligence & cultural competence to frontline practice.

She has a special interest in gangs & youth violence & the effects youth marginalisation, discrimination & exclusion in various systems has on Black & mixed race children & young people.

She is currently undertaking Craig Pinkney's course at University College Birmingham - Working with Gangs & Youth Violence.

Maria has 30 years experience of working with Black communities in various settings & is affiliated to The Black Child Agenda (Schools to Prison Pipeline). She acts as their Social Care Advisor & Independent Advocate supporting children and families who face discrimination & has successfully challenged schools & social care with Cheryl Phoenix (Founder/Director).

A Panel of senior Police and Statutory managers include:

Nottinghamshire Police & Crime Commissioner

The Chief Constable of Nottinghamshire Police

The Superintendent for Nottinghamshire Police

Heads of Youth Justice Service (City and County)

Regional Manager Reducing Offending partnership (RRP)

Redthread (Knife Crime Trauma team QMC)

Key delegates include:

Crown Prosecution Service

Head of children’s strategy (city)

Chair of Nottinghamshire Black Police Association

Head of Access to Learning (City)

Coordinator for Schools Health Hub (County)

Nottinghamshire Victim Care will be attending the conference to provide support on standby for anyone emotionally affected by the issues / topics discussed on the day.

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