Working and living in Barnsley

Barnsley is a great place to live, work and visit. We’re open for business, with our central location, digital connectivity, and excellent links to major road networks. It’s an appealing place to live, with our thriving town centre and Principal Towns. We’re home to one of the best markets in South Yorkshire and everyone can enjoy the borough’s excellent cultural attractions, leisure facilities and our beautiful outdoor spaces.

In Barnsley we want everyone to have a good life and we believe Barnsley to be the place of possibilities – for our residents and the people who work  with us. This means everything from a quality place to call home, to good physical and mental wellbeing and a sense of self-worth through diverse and secure employment opportunities.

Why Barnsley is booming

We believe it's time to believe in the possibilities of Barnsley, to look to the future with excitement and optimism. Our town is a place that fosters and grows ambition, enabling everyone to be the best they can be. The drive and innovation that has helped regenerate our town centre is something we want to apply across all aspects of life in the borough.

Children's Services in Barnsley

Barnsley Council prioritises Children’s Services and wants every child in the borough to achieve their full potential, to be safe and happy. We highly value the work of our social workers and we're deeply committed to achieving the very best outcomes for vulnerable children and young people in Barnsley.

We are one service with one goal, working together to build a brighter Barnsley for every child. This vision is underpinned by our three key values:

  • Putting Children and Families First

  • Working together in partnership to deliver joined up care

  • Delivered by a strong and valued workforce 

Children and their families are at the centre of all that we do, and our practice is underpinned by a strength based and relational model. Our social workers receive regular supervision, appraisals, training, and development opportunities.

We’ve had significant financial investment in Barnsley Children’s Services, securing an additional £9 million in November 2022, and a genuine commitment from senior leaders to strengthen our services to support the future of our children and young people. We recognise our social workers are our greatest resource and are committed to delivering;

  • Manageable caseloads across all case holding teams

  • Supportive and committed teams and management

  • Access to training and learning opportunities that enables social workers to offer the highest quality service to our children and their families

  • A professional development offer that recognises and supports career development and aspirations

This is being delivered by ongoing work including:

  • An increase in staffing as part of our commitment to driving manageable caseloads

  • Increased management capacity and robust support and oversight

  • Investment and commitment to our workforce, staff training and development 

At Barnsley Council, we live and work by four important values: honesty, teamwork, excellent service, and taking pride in what we do.  We’d love to help you develop your career and for you to be part of the ambitious plans we have for the future of our beautiful borough.

What our social workers say

Social Work colleagues in Barnsley who had their say during our recent Social Work Health Check consultation highlighted some of the reasons our authority is a great place for social work practice to flourish:

"That the organisation is child focused, a staff team who are creative and supportive."

"Team support, flexible working and really good multi-agency working."

"Time to work with children, colleagues within the team, positive outlook about future learning culture."

"Very supportive management, clear feedback on my progress, range of Continued Professional Development."

"Access to support, workload that is not too high, consistent management."

"The most approachable manager I have ever had. Outstanding!"

Historic double award win for Barnsley Council

We’re delighted to have made history by becoming the first council to win the two most prestigious awards in local government in the same year.

BBC newsreader Huw Edwards announced Barnsley Council as the MJ Awards’ Local Authority of the Year at a ceremony in London on Friday 23 June. This follows our triumph at the Local Government Chronicle Awards earlier this month where we were crowned Council of the Year.

Both awards highlight Barnsley’s excellent reputation nationally and put our borough on the map as a place to live, work, shop and visit.

Cllr Sir Steve Houghton CBE, Leader of Barnsley Council, said: “This second major award in two weeks recognises the major changes seen in Barnsley over the last few years which are improving opportunities for local people.

“We’ve already heard so many people say how much they love the Glass Works and our amazing new town centre. It’s fantastic to have two sets of independent experts in local government, tell us just how impressed they are. People from all over the country are literally asking us ‘how have you done that?’.

“In both of these wins, it’s about so much more than the town centre. The judges have recognised we deliver high levels of service across the board compared to other areas, we spend less money than other areas, and we’re doing things which stand out.

“That includes bringing NHS services into the heart of our town centre making it easier than ever to get the vital checks that people need.

“It includes securing a multi-million investment in a new Northern Academy of Vocal Excellence, which will be the new home for the world-famous Barnsley Youth Choir.

“It includes bringing more and better-paid jobs through growing the digital sector and supporting our home-grown businesses, meaning for the first time in decades we have more job vacancies than we have people looking for work.”

The awards will help attract continued inward investment, both in terms of private sector investment and government, helping us create even more jobs. They will also help us recruit the best talent as we promote Barnsley as a great place to work.

Sarah Norman, Chief Executive of Barnsley Council, said: “The four years I’ve been here in Barnsley have been challenging, going through a pandemic, yet I’m so proud of what our staff, councillors, and partners have achieved.

“I’m particularly proud of the work with partners to improve people’s health and wellbeing, with amazing results. We’ve eliminated delayed discharges in adult social care, we’ve seen a 25% increase in breast screening, and halved the borough’s suicide rate.

“We gave the judges the opportunity to see for themselves the impact of our Area Council and Ward Alliance work, including the reach of Our More Money in Your Pocket programme to address the cost of living crisis. This has been used by more than a third of Barnsley residents this year.  

“We’re so proud of what we’ve achieved not just for the council but for our partners and Barnsley and hope others can learn from our success.”

Relocation support

If you are considering relocating to Barnsley we provide a comprehensive relocation benefits package. 

This features up to £8,000 to cover reasonable costs such as:

  • Removal expenses

  • Storage costs

  • Legal and estate agent fees

  • Travelling experiences

For more information about these benefits and jobs contact our HR team at

To find out more about our Children’s Social Worker jobs visit
Children’s Social Worker Jobs

For international candidates, registration with Social Work England is essential. Further information can be found on the SWE website.