Rose Warlock reports from the NCAS conference

Rosie Warlock, a senior practitioner in children’s social services, on her visit to the NCAS conference

● I attended the National Children and Adults Services Conference (NCAS) in Liverpool. There were several worthy discussions but I found the lack of seminars or questions about the coming recession surprising, given that the 1,700 delegates should be worrying about their budgets. Oh, and the cost was £500 – the council paid for it.

Come the last night and time to let the hair down, what happens? The disco is replaced by a choir in a cathedral. I am upset and the directors are disappointed. Even Ed Balls demands the disco’s reinstatement. But there is no moving the organisers.

● NCAS was held in a BT conference centre, and guess what? Mobiles didn’t work.

● In the eponymous nursery rhyme, Doctor Foster went to Gloucester but there he was in Liverpool offering massages – a ploy to sell a personalisation tool to councils. The idea is that the hands-on approach would massage away the personalisation worries. Nice thought, but at the moment I expect council directors are more worried about massaging their accounts after the Iceland farrago.

● After fleeing from the smell of a smoking room in a hotel in Liverpool, one of my colleagues was given room 666. In the morning we tried to get her to do the head turning trick from the Exorcist but the poor lass was too tired after being awake all night fearing every bang and rustle.

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