A government scheme has meant that a new pre-school centre will be able to provide spaces for up to 60 children in Chippenham.
The Rise Trust successfully bid for a share of a £50 million grant that was made available by the Government, which is aiming to deliver 30 hours free childcare starting from September 2017.
Of this grant, a total of £1.4 million was handed to early years providers including: Old Sarum Nursery in Salisbury, Smiley Face Nursery in Amesbury, The Mead School in Trowbridge and Westview Nursery in Bradford on Avon.
The charity plans to use the money to create an excellence centre at St Paul’s Church, with the aim of having it completed by September of this year. The total cost is said to be near the £500,000 mark.
The Rise Trust manages 6 children’s centres in the Chippenham area.
Chief executive Pauline Monaghan OBE has said of the new plans:
“We are delighted and this funding will go specifically for running pre-school education. We are in the process of the plans being drawn up and then we will have to apply for planning permission.
“We’ve been in full discussion with St Paul’s and they’re quite happy to work with us to develop a community facility.
“They have a history of working in the community, providing facilities for the community and they welcomed the opportunity to work with The Rise Trust to provide this pre-school education. If we don’t provide it there is going to a big shortage of places in that part of Chippenham.
“There are parents who can’t get their children into pre-school and this is going to be a big help for local families.”
Cabinet minister for children’s services, Laura Mayes, said of the grants received in early years: “These successful bids will help us to support parents wanting to take up their 30 hours’ free entitlement.”
Is a £50 million grant from the Government enough to help early years providers successfully deliver their plans for 30 hours childcare?