A government commissioner has been appointed to assess the future of the county council’s failing children’s services.

Chief Executive of Hampshire County Council, John Coughlan, has been selected by the Department for Education to decide whether the service should be handed over to the Government.

The Bucks County Council service was once against rated inadequate in January after a damning report found “inconsistent and too slow progress” had been made since the last inspection in 2014.

Inspectors found management oversight in the majority of cases was inadequate, claiming that some children have experienced a delay in being “looked after” and left in “unacceptable” situations for too long.

A Government notice sent to BCC said the role of Mr Coughlan will be to: “Issue any necessary instructions to the local authority for the purpose of securing immediate improvement in the authority’s delivery of children’s social care; to identify ongoing improvement requirements; and to recommend any additional support required to deliver those improvements.”

Mr Coughlan, who is a former president of the Association of Directors of Children’s Services, is expected to report his recommendations to parliament in June this year.