The three regions of the county under study are different in social and economic structure. These are: The Eastern Region; the Southern Region; and the Western Region. The differences have probably been accentuated by the overall system of social services management in the county, which gives a lot of autonomy to the regions. The Eastern Region is dominated by a large industrial town. In the Southern Region, the central market town is surrounded by a stable rural population where parents and grandparents have a high expectation of involvement. The Western Region was fairly loose-knit, with a cluster of small community teams and magistrates’ courts. The lack of family support, combined with high rates of psychiatric disorder and a higher-than-average dependency on state benefits, creates a demand for care as a form of resource distribution. The general picture is of social workers trying to respond to community needs but also pushing back strongly with professional notions of what good child-care involves.