Bury Council said it aims to "transform" its children's services department after apologising over a case in which a dad killed his baby boy in Radcliffe and the release of a new national report.

The National Child Safeguarding practice review investigated the deaths of 16-month year old Star Hobson, from Bradford, and six-year-old Arthur Labinjo-Hughes, from Solihull, who were both murdered in 2020 following abuse.

The report, published last Wednesday, found that the deaths of Star and Arthur were "not isolated incidents" and "reflect wider problems in child safeguarding practice".

The review panel recommended that every council in the country implement an “expert-led, multi-agency child protection units to undertake investigation, planning and oversight of children at risk".

Last year, Bury Council apologised and admitted “lessons must be learned” after the death of Zakari Bennett-Eko, from Radcliffe, who was thrown into the River Irwell in 2019 by his father Zak who had schizophrenia and had begged to be sectioned three days before the tragedy.

A serious case review conducted by the Bury Safeguarding Partnership Board identified a series of failings, chiefly involving Manchester social services and clinical commissioners, which contributed to the little boy’s death.

In October 2021, education watchdog, Ofsted rated Bury’s children’s services as “inadequate” and found that “children in need of help and protection are not always identified".

In response to the new national report, a spokesperson from Bury Council said: “The publication of the independent review of children’s social care is welcome.

"We await the government’s response to the report, as legislative changes will be required, along with partnership working with the government to support progression of the recommendations.

“In Bury we have had a strong commitment to locality-based early help delivered to families, so the recognition of the importance of family help within the report is significant.

“In relation to improvement here – we have established a detailed improvement plan which focuses upon the need to prioritise safeguarding but is ambitious and seeks to transform children’s services.

“An improvement board meets monthly and provides the governance arrangements overseeing them, and is independently chaired by our Department for Education advisor.

“Our key priorities have been establishing a stable leadership team, recruitment and retention of staff.

"We have increased our staffing in order to reduce caseloads, which is necessary to deliver improved services to children and families.”