Nearly two thirds of children in the care of Buckinghamshire County Council have been placed with foster families outside the county - with some living hundreds of miles away.

Just 43 of the 224 children cared for by the council still live within the county boundaries, figures released through the Freedom of Information Act show.

Of those living outside Bucks, five have been placed into care in Lancashire, while others are being looked after by foster families as far afield as Devon, Tyne and Wear and Pembrokeshire.

The figures, which were obtained through an FOI request by Labour's Parliamentary candidate for Chesham and Amersham, Ben Davies, show the children are being cared for in 31 counties across England and Wales.

The most recent Ofsted figures show the national average for children being placed into care more than 20 miles from home stands at 12 per cent.

Council bosses have this week launched a fresh campaign to find new foster carers in Buckinghamshire.

But Mr Davies said: "Buckinghamshire County Council has a woeful record for its children’s services - this was highlighted in the damning Ofsted report in August last year that led to the then Conservative-run coalition government sending in a task force run by Red Quadrant.

"We know that cared for children face enormous challenges - away from proper supervision by the authority and in the light of recent stories we have to ask are these children being put at risk?"

The council has arranged several information events to try to help the hundreds of young people in need of foster parents.

Steve Tanner, Interim Head of Children’s Care Services at Buckinghamshire County Council, said: "At any one time, we have around 430 children in care in Buckinghamshire and it’s vital we find them good homes and supportive foster parents to give them the support they so badly need.

"We held information sessions earlier this year and they were a great success, but we still need many more foster parents to avoid us having to send these young people either out of the county or into residential units. Fostering is a specialist career choice, where excellent support, brilliant training and a financial allowance will be provided.

"We know there are many, many wonderful caring residents of our county out there who could be perfect foster carers, but they probably don’t realise just how rewarding it is to become one, or perhaps they just don’t know how to get started."

The first session was held in High Wycombe on Thursday, with further ones planned at Aylesbury Opportunities Centre on April 23, Buckingham Opportunities Centre on April 30 and Chesham Town Hall on May 5.

Booking for the sessions is essential. Bookings can be made by contacting or 0800 160 1900. For more information, go to