A video programme which examines the progress of decentralised social services department through the experiences of three local teams. It begins by tracing the development of community oriented methods of working from the birth of the welfare state to the publication of the Barclay Report in 1982. Interviews with a range of staff from three of the forty-three local teams which constitute East Sussex Services Department seek to describe what a patchwork approach involves, to highlight the issues which managers and workers must address, and to identify the benefits and gains associated with such methods of working.
This film made in 1984 reflects the cultural attitudes, social work procedures and language of the time it was made. The imagery and film quality may not be to modern standards. But the issues raised are timeless.