Information for staff

Here you will find information for Northumberland County Council employees including health and safety, staff induction, human resources and e-learning.

Here you will find quick links for employees of Northumberland County Council.

Staff email access

Expenses claim system

This page gives an overview of the authority for new staff members.

The objectives of staff induction are to integrate staff into the organisation and provide them with access to resources to perform their job efficiently and effectively within a short timeframe.

Objectives also include providing support to enable staff to:
  • understand their role within the organisation
  • contribute effectively to the success of the organisation
  • understand processes, procedures, structures and standards
  • develop a positive attitude to their work and the organisation
  • be aware of their legal responsibilities, including those relating to fellow staff and to health and safety
  • enhance staff retention within the organisation
The induction programme should introduce the employee to their working environment and their job, including colleagues, expectations of conduct and performance.

The aim of induction is to make the employee feel an integral part of the department and the council, and to enable them to settle into their job so they can become productive and effective quickly.

To find out more about induction, simply select the induction scheme document in the table below. Staff should receive a service-led induction as well as the corporate induction.

A new member of staff may find the following documents useful as a starting point.
  • For more information about health and safety, see below.
  • To find out more about staff pensions, see further down this page.
For more information on staff induction, please contact the learning and organisational development team on 01670 624803.
The corporate health and safety team provides advice to managers and other employees of Northumberland County Council.

Note:  Our new Corporate Health and Safety Information Portal is now live for corporate NCC Staff and replaces this webpage.  School staff should continue to use the webpage until the new school year when the information portal will be available to all Schools which are signed up to the Health and Safety SLA we provide.

Particular members of the team also provide advice and information to schools and other county council establishments in respect of outdoor educational visits.  In addition, the team provide advice to partner organisations such as Active Northumberland, Advance Northumberland and some school academies.

Please note that public health and safety concerns should be directed to either the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) (who enforce health and safety legislation in industrial and high risk premises) or the county council's public protection service for non-industrial premises such as shops, offices, restaurants etc.

Health and Safety during COVID-19

Please click here to access the Corporate Health and Safety Team staff portal for model risk assessments and other information regarding COVID-19

Some schools are reporting difficulties accessing documents via the portal. To resolve this, please try opening any links sent to you via the e-courier or Head's briefing in "icognito" mode (right click on the hyperlink then select Icognito Window/Private Window). 

Additional information can be found via the links belows:

Latest Government advice:

 Advice for NCC corporate staff (also available via the NCC staff homepage):
Managing Respiratory Infections in the Workplace Policy_HRP-53-V2.9 .docx

Accident, Near Miss and Violent Incident Logging System (ANVIL)

To benefit from the full functionality of ANVIL, and to comply with NCC data security requirements, to access the form you must be on the NCC network in an NCC building or have an NCC device, such as a laptop or tablet, with direct access to the network.  Some school staff who don't have network access may be able to access the system via a virtual desktop.   If you require assistance with access, or have a technical issue with using the e-form, please log a call with NCC Digital & IT help desk: 

Report an Incident

You can report an incident via the links below.

If you have NCC network access please use this link:

REPORT AN INCIDENT ON ANVIL - all NCC establishments, including schools with NCC network access, should use this link  to report an incident.  This option includes a facility for a Manager to authorise a report prior to submission to the Corporate Health and Safety Team.  Any Academies which have NCC network access may also use this link to access this facility, although please note that certain fields may not autopopulate.

If you DO NOT have NCC network access please use this link:

REPORT AN INCIDENT ON ANVIL- Academies and other schools with no NCC network access should use this link.  The Manager authorisation function is not available via this option; this is due to NCC data security requirements. 

Click here for guidelines for reporting a Violent Incident. 

Manager Reporting System - ANVIL 

Managers can view accident, near miss and violent incident data relating to their service via the link below.  


Please note that access to the reporting system needs to be set up centrally. To request access, please email and include details of the service for which you require access to data.  In some cases, further authorisation may be required by a senior manager within your Directorate.  


A training video with further information and instruction on how to use the form is provided below.  This also includes instruction for Managers who are approving forms completed by their staff:

ANVIL TRAINING VIDEO - updated October 2018 

If you have any questions regarding the use of the e-form, please contact your Health and Safety Advisor or any member of the Corporate Health and Safety Team on 01670 623854.  

Statutory reporting to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE)

The council has a duty to report certain injuries and incidents to the health and safety executive, under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013. The forms for reporting incidents online to the HSE can be accessed by clicking the necessary link:


Incident investigation

Here you will find general risk assessment forms, templates and guidance documentation

Risk assessment forms: templates and guidance
Provided below are an assortment of blank risk assessment forms and guidance documents on how to complete these. 

General risk assessments
Below are a range of general risk assessments to assist managers in completing risk assessments, the content of which should be added to and edited as required. 


School risk assessments
The risk assessments below are relevant to activities in all schools. The content should be added to and edited as required.

Provided below are policy and guidance documents relating to health and safety.   Further detailed policy information can also be found in the Corporate Health and Safety Manual and Schools' Health and Safety Manual: School Specific Policies (see also Health and Safety Manual for Schools and Safeguarding)

Safeguarding and security self-help kit for schools

Fire logbook


Staying safe while using social media
To help keep you safe online, staff who use social media are encouraged to complete the training module ‘getting started using social media’, which is available to access via the council’s learning together e-learning system.


Health & safety bulletins

Important issues that have been the subject of a safety bulletin issued by the corporate health and safety team are listed below:


Listed below are health and safety newsletters issued by the corporate health and safety team: 
The corporate health and safety policy manual for managers and other employees of Northumberland County Council is available below. A separate manual is available for those staff working in schools.

Managers should ensure that any paper copies of the policy manual retained on their premises are kept up to date. Any changes made to the manual will be published below.  Where there are significant changes in policy these will also publicised via health and safety groups and staff bulletins:
The health and safety manual for schools is available below for use by all employees and managers in schools. A separate manual exists for all other council employees.

Headteachers or managers should ensure that any paper copies of the policy manual retained on their premises are kept up to date. Any major changes made to the manual will be publicised via the schools e-courier and published on this webpage:
This page details the information and documentation required in order to ensure that employees’ exposure to hand arm vibration is suitably managed.

road drill For further information on this subject, please click here.

cleaning picture
As an employer, Northumberland County Council is required, by law, to display the health and safety executive approved health and safety law poster in a prominent position in each workplace. This informs workers of the responsibilities that they and their employer have in relation to health and safety at work. The poster is available in two sizes: the standard A2 size and a smaller A3 version.

As an alternative for peripatetic workers, leaflets and pocket cards are also available.
health and safety law poster

Where can I purchase the poster?
It is available from various bookshops, health and safety executive books, and the supplies team, who are the council’s stationary supplier. No central budget is available to fund this. Leaflets and pocket cards can be downloaded, free, by clicking this link.

Once your new poster has arrived, you should add the names of the health and safety representatives and health and safety contacts.

Health and safety representatives
This should include the contact details of any staff health and safety representatives

Other health and safety contacts
The contact details for the corporate health and safety team should be added:

Visits involving children and young people
The county council uses an online visit notification system called EVOLVE. This system is currently used by 102 other local authorities across the country. Schools and other establishments, undertaking outdoor educational visits involving children and young people, can access EVOLVE by clicking here. Further guidance and policy documents can also be accessed via this system.

For further information or assistance please contact:
  • Nigel Chopping, Health and Safety Advisor - 01670 623807
Visits involving adults
For outdoor visits involving adult service users, this pre-journey checklist should be utilised.
Section K1 of the Corporate Health & Safety manual provides guidance on infection control and other health related policies. 

For use in schools and other educational settings, below is the template for 'supporting pupils with medical condtions' policy: 
Public Health England advice 

The following link will take you to Public Health England's webpages on advice for health protection in schools and other childcare settings:  Chapter 9 of the above document provides guidance on symptoms and exclusion periods for specific infectious diseases: The link below provides advice on infection control in care homes:  If you require support to prevent and reduce the effect of diseases and chemical and radiation hazards then please contact your nearest local health protection team using the link below:
Learning Together is the online learning environment for employees of Northumberland County Council.

Here you will find information on human resources for staff, including HR policies, guidelines and procedures.

We are currently in the process of reviewing this page, if you require a policy or form please contact or call us on 01670 626 150

LGPS pension administration services for Northumberland County Council are provided by South Tyneside Council as the administering authority of Tyne and Wear Pension Fund.

Up until 31 March 2020 Northumberland County Council Pension Fund was part of the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) and required to maintain a pension fund. On 1 April 2020 Northumberland County Council Pension Fund merged into Tyne and Wear Pension Fund. The Local Government Pension Scheme (Northumberland and Tyne and Wear Pension Fund Merger) Regulations 2020 (UK Statutory Instrument 2020 No 502) came into force on 3 June 2020 giving merger retrospective effect.  All assets and liabilities of Northumberland County Council Pension Fund became the assets and liabilities of Tyne and Wear Pension Fund on 1 April 2020, and therefore Northumberland County Council Pension Fund ceased to exist on 31 March 2020. 
The Merger Regulations removed Northumberland County Council from the LGPS Regulations as a body required to maintain a LGPS fund or prepare accounts from 1 April 2020.

For information about Tyne and Wear Pension Fund, go to
LGPS members can find out about the Scheme from the website at

The website has guides to the Scheme and forms for members to complete, such as change of
address form and opt out form.

For any questions, members can write, email or telephone:

The Pensions Office 
Town Hall and Civic Offices
Westoe Road
South Shields
Tyne and Wear
NE33 2RL
0191 424 4141    Please visit the Contact Page for further details
Up until 31 March 2020 Northumberland County Council Pension Fund was part of the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) and required to maintain a pension fund and various policy statements.  On 1 April 2020 Northumberland County Council Pension Fund merged into Tyne and Wear Pension Fund.  The Local Government Pension Scheme (Northumberland and Tyne and Wear Pension Fund Merger) Regulations 2020 (UK Statutory Instrument 2020 No 502) came into force on 3 June 2020 giving merger retrospective effect.  All assets and liabilities of Northumberland County Council Pension Fund became the assets and liabilities of Tyne and Wear Pension Fund on 1 April 2020, and therefore Northumberland County Council Pension Fund ceased to exist on 31 March 2020. 

The policies which applied to Northumberland County Council Pension Fund until 31 March 2020 are:

Action Plan 2019
Actuarial Valuation 2019
Administering Authority Discretions Policy
Administration Strategy
Communication Policy
Conflicts of Interest Policy
Funding Strategy Statement
Fund Objectives
Governence Policy and Compliance Statement
Investment Strategy Statement 2020
Panel Decisions Assessment 2019-20
Pension Fund Cash Pooling Policy
Procedure for Reporting Breaches of the Law
Training Policy for NCC Pension Fund

For policies with effect from 1 April 2020, go to

The Firefighters' Pension Scheme (FPS) for Northumberland Fire and Rescue is administered by West Yorkshire Pension Fund. Further information about the FPS 2015, FPS 2006, FPS 1992 and RDS Modified can be found at:

West Yorkshire Pension Fund
PO Box 67
West Yorkshire Pension Fund’s Pensions Website:
Telephone: West Yorkshire Pension Fund’s Pension Helpline 01274 434999
The four person Board was established in 2015, in accordance with the Public Service Pensions Act 2013, to assist Northumberland County Council, in its capacity as Fire and Rescue Authority, in the governance and administration of the Firefighters’ Pension Scheme (FPS).

Note:  The FPS Local Pension Board is not a local authority committee.
The role of the Board is to assist Northumberland County Council as Scheme Manager:
  • to secure compliance with the FPS Regulations and any other legislation relating to the governance and administration of the Scheme, and requirements imposed in relation to the FPS by the Pensions Regulator: and 
  • to ensure the effective and efficient governance and administration of the FPS.
The Council considers the FPS Local Pension Board to provide oversight of these matters and, accordingly, the FPS Local Pension Board is not a decision making body in relation to the management of the FPS.  Instead the Board can make recommendations to assist in such management of the FPS.
There are four members of the Board, all with voting rights.
The two Employer Representatives are:
            Two NCC councillors other than the Chairman of the Pension Fund Panel or
            members of the Disputes Panel (Fire Service);
The two Scheme Member Representatives are:
            (i)    a FPS Union Representative, and
            (ii)   a FPS active or pensioner member, sourced by seeking interest from
       members via a direct request.
There are a minimum of two meetings per year, with the option for the Chair of the Board to call more.
Membership and Contact Details
Employer Representatives:

Councillor John Beynon
Councillor member of Northumberland County Council
  • appointed to the Board in November 2021

Councillor Malcolm Robinson
Councillor member of Northumberland County Council
  • appointed to the Board in November 2021
Scheme Member Representatives:

 Michael McKendrick 
 FBU bridge official (Northumberland County branch)
 Firefighter (NCC Fire & Rescue Service)
  • appointed to the Board in May 2023
Stephen Richards
FPS active/pensioner member representative on the Board
  • appointed to the Board in September 2015

Chair of the Board:
Stephen Richards
  • appointed to the Board in September 2015
Can be accessed from the link below:

Declarations of conflicts for all Board members
The appointments process for each member of the Board is set out in the Terms of Reference. 

The Appointments Panel (as defined in the Terms of Reference) did not deem it necessary to appoint an independent chair of the Board at inception.

 The Appointments Panel held interviews in September 2015 to select the active/pensioner member representative, and selected the Chair of NCC’s FPS LPB after making that appointment.

Terms of reference

Welcome to the webpage for legal services which is part of the council’s corporate resources directorate.

Legal services is continually facing significant challenges both in terms of service review and identifying recurring savings to assist the council as a whole in achieving efficiency savings in these times of austerity.
Legal services provides advice and support across the full range of council functions and has developed a number of service level agreements (SLAs) with other organisations for the provision of legal services.

These SLAs are constantly reviewed and meetings with client departments are held in the normal course of business.

Our key customers are:
  • the various county council groups and its arm’s length management organisations
  • elected members
  • town & parish councils
  • NHS
  • academies and various government agencies, together with other clients for who we act under service level agreements
The overall aim of the legal team is to provide a full legal service to the council and those other bodies to who it provides services under service level agreements or other arrangements.
  • We advise and support members, senior officers and their staff and various council bodies and panels on all legal and related matters.
  • We provide advocacy services to ensure the council is appropriately represented in the various levels of courts and tribunals.
  • We proactively advising our clients on developments in the law and assisting them with preparing for any consequential effects on their services.
  • In the case of clients, other than the council itself, we provide the legal services stipulated in the service level agreements or other arrangements with those clients.
We provide and maintain legal advice and support to front line services, other central support services and the council by:
  • protecting the integrity of the council and ensuring sound governance
  • providing legal services and advice to clients other than the council itself in accordance with service level agreements or other arrangements
  • continuously improving services and value for money by appraising performance, developing staff and reviewing practices and procedures
  • listening to customers and partners and developing stakeholder relationships
  • actively supporting the democratic process and reviews of the constitution
The service has recently signed up to the Law Society’s diversity and inclusion charter.

The Law Society diversity and inclusion charter is the flagship diversity initiative of the legal profession.

It is an instantly recognisable public statement of commitment by its signatories and a framework for positive action across all strands of diversity.
Legal services is made up of four teams, children and adult services, corporate and governance, regulation and legal support.

Children & adult services

Peter Tilson – principal solicitor


  • We advise children’s services on issues arising from care of young persons, providing advice, drafting legal proceedings and representing them in court relating to child protection and adoption.
  • We provide advice to independent reviewing officers from North Tyneside Council, chairing child protection conferences as required.
  • We advise children’s services on disclosure of information under the Data Protection Act, and represent children’s services in court on matters relating to public interest immunity.
  • We advise Northumberland Safeguarding Children Board.
  • We advise Northumberland County Council's adoption and fostering panels.

We advise Northumbria Healthcare Service on:

  • care in the community
  • vulnerable adults, the elderly and adults with learning/physical disabilities and mental health problems
  • matters affecting service users
  • complaints
  • probate and court protection matters including advocacy
  • residents' disputes and determinations
  • court of protection, receivership and lasting power of attorney
  • deprivation of assets and avoiding care fees
  • drafting of policies and procedures for Northumbria Healthcare Service
  • Northumberland Safeguarding Adults Board and committee membership
  • the safeguarding adults co-ordinator in respect of individual cases and general protection
  • complaints against the  council and/or Northumbria Healthcare Service
Corporate & governance

Helen Lancaster – principal solicitor (Monday - Thursday)


  • We advise on the ethical standards regime as it affects county councillors and town and parish councils.
  • We support the council’s systems for dealing with local assessment, investigation and determination of complaints about members’ conduct.
  • We advise on the requirements of the council’s constitution, finance and contract rules.
  • We advise on legal issues arising from the ombudsman and other complaints.
  • We advise in issues relating to Newcastle Airport Local Authority Holding Company Ltd.
  • We deal with corporate issues, such as human rights and freedom of information.
  • We provide legal representation at complaints panels.
  • We advise about trusts and charities.
  • We advise about pensions issues, including part-time pension claims.
  • We advise about the Data Protection Act.
  • We advise about the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act.
  • We advise about copyright issues.
  • We advise children’s services and schools on issues such as admissions, exclusions and special educational needs.
  • We providing legal advisory and litigation services for procurement.
  • We deal with all the associated council activities regarding property acquisition and disposal.
  • We provide contractual and procurement advice across the council.
  • We provide advice to the local services group about open spaces, cemeteries and allotments.
  • We work in respect of legal charges.
  • We brief Counsel or other experts if engaged for advisory and advocacy services.
  • We advise on human resources policies and handling employment tribunals, including advocacy.

Neil Masson - principal solicitor


  • We advise on and undertake planning and environmental health enforcement action through service of notices and appearances in court.
  • We attend and advise planning, licensing and regulatory committees.
  • We appear for the council and advocate its case in relation to appeals against the licensing authority’s decision not to grant licenses in relation to the sale of alcohol, provision of public entertainment and taxi drivers’ operators.
  • We advise about community safety, including information sharing and the council’s obligations under the Crime and Disorder Act.
  • We advise, prepare and present antisocial behaviour order applications in the magistrates’ court.
  • We apply for injunctions, housing possession and other civil remedies in support of the council’s antisocial behaviour initiative.
  • We advise on and conduct criminal prosecutions on behalf of trading standards.
  • We brief Counsel or other experts if engaged for advisory and advocacy services.
  • We advise the fire service on a variety of issues.
  • We advise on and conduct prosecutions of parents for failing to send their children to school under the Education Act.
  • We advise on conducting breach proceedings on behalf of the youth offending team in respect of young people who breach criminal orders.
  • We provide advisory and litigation services for highways, rights of way and village green matters.
  • We attend and advise the rights of way committee.
  • We advise on environmental issues.
This procedure has been introduced for use by legal services’ clients in accordance with our commitment to providing a quality, client responsive legal service and to the continuous improvement of that service.

This procedure covers both complaints and also more general comments clients may wish to make about the service they have received from legal services or suggestions for improvement of the service.

A copy of this procedure is sent to each client department and to each school and any other organisation which has a service level agreement with legal services.

It may be necessary to update this procedure to incorporate any revisions found necessary through experience of operation or through client comments.

If the procedure requires updating then a copy of the revised procedure will be sent to each client department, school and organisation with a service level agreement.

In any event client departments, schools and those other organisations will receive a copy of the current procedure with each re-issue of the legal services’ client care information document.
Any client who wishes to make a formal complaint about the way that a matter has been handled or about any other aspect of the service provided by legal services should initially send details of their complaint, in writing, to the legal services manager.

Legal services is committed to high quality legal advice and client care. If you are unhappy about any aspect of the service you have received or the bill, please contact:

Legal Services Manager in writing to Legal Services Unit, Northumberland County Council, County Hall, Morpeth, Northumberland NE61 2EF.

We have a procedure in place which details how we handle complaints which is available on the council’s website here.

The process

  • The legal services manager will acknowledge receipt of the complaint within seven days of its receipt.
  • The legal services manager will investigate the complaint and provide a response to the complainant within 28 days of receipt of the complaint.
  • In exceptional circumstances, if a full response cannot be provided within 28 days of receipt of the complaint, the legal services manager will write to the complainant within 28 days informing the complainant of when he/she will receive a full response.
  • If you are dissatisfied with the response of the legal services manager, the complainant should write to the head of corporate resources explaining why he/she is dissatisfied with the response.
  • Every complaint will be recorded by the head of corporate resources/legal services manager in a register which will contain brief details of the complaint and its outcome. Each complaint and all associated correspondence will be kept on a file maintained by the head of corporate resources/legal services manager.
  • If you are not satisfied with our handling of your complaint you can ask the legal ombudsman to consider the complaint. Normally, you will need to bring a complaint to the legal ombudsman within six months of receiving a final written response from us about your complaint or within a year of the act or omission about which you are complaining occurring (or you becoming aware of it).
Legal services also welcome any comments you may wish to make upon the service you have received or any suggestions you may have for its improvement.

If clients have any such suggestions or comments, they should write to the legal services manager.

The legal services manager will acknowledge and respond to any such comments or suggestions within seven days of receipt. If a comment or suggestion requires a detailed response which cannot be provided within seven days it will be provided within 28 days.
The legal services manager will conduct an annual review of all complaints and comments received during the year under this procedure to ensure that all actions to be taken by legal services in response to a complaint or comment have been taken, and that any improvements to the service implemented in response have been maintained.