The Sunshine Nursery in Chesterfield has closed down after caring for thousands of children over the last 25 years.
Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust explained that the nursery made a loss of £150,000 last year and was no longer sustainable.
Based at Walton Hospital, parents blasted the decision to close the nursery, stating they were concerned their children would not receive the same level of care in an alternate setting.
A trust spokesman said: “We can confirm that Chesterfield’s Sunshine Nursery has closed.”
“We first shared this difficult news with parents back in March to give them as much notice as possible and have offered our support to help them make alternative arrangements for their children.”
“We have also successfully redeployed a number of the nursery staff within the organisation, yet regrettably, had to say goodbye to some others.”
“As an NHS organisation, our primary focus needs to be on the provision of high-quality community health services for local people; continuing to operate a nursery service would move us away from this aim.”
“The nursery has also been operating at a significant financial loss for some time which cannot be sustained in the current economic climate – we must make the most of every pound spent for our patients.”
“The team at Sunshine Nursery provided a fantastic service over the years and have seen thousands of babies, toddlers and young children in that time.”
“It leaves a legacy to be proud of and the decision to close it was a very difficult one for everyone concerned.”
Parents have paid tribute to the nursery and its staff on their Facebook page, expressing how sad they are about the closure. One message from a parent said:
“Thank you all for being so amazing.” and another, “So, so sad to see Sunshine Nursery closed after all those years.”
The trust has insisted that the closure of the setting has nothing to do with rumours that they are planning to knock down the disused western wing of Walton Hospital to make way for a new housing development.