A LEADING councillor and the chair of Thurrock's children's scrutiny committee has stepped down over controversy surrounding the death of a toddler. 

The children's social services team is currently embroiled in controversy after claims by a whistleblower that a string of failing by the management team contributed to the death of a 23-month old toddler in January. 

An inquest held last month heard the coroner failed to find the cause of the youngsters death.

At a meeting last night, councillor John Kent resigned as chair of the committee after senior officers failed to provide a report about a Thurrock Council investigation into allegations made by whistleblowers from within the Children's Services department about the death.