When little Caitlin Armstrong walked through the doors of her new nursery, she created a little bit of history: she was the first child to enrol with Active Childcare.
She was only three and never thought she would be back there 23 years on, this time with her baby son. She lived with her parents in nearby Trevalyn when she first attended the nursery; “I have such positive memories of my time there,” she said.
In April this year, Caitlin and her husband Jake moved from Nottingham back to North Wales. Although they knew there were other nurseries for Finnley closer to their new home in Penyffordd, they were delighted to find a place for him at Rossett House. Finnley, their first child, attends three days a week.
Caitlin – now Davies – had such happy memories of her time at the Rossett House Nursery near Wrexham, she had no hesitation in choosing it as the place for eight-month-old Finnley. “It’s very convenient because Jake works on Deeside and can drop him off in the morning. I can then pick him up in the afternoon,” said Caitlin, a service manager with the Priority Adult Care Group.
Wrexham-based Active Childcare Ltd owns the Rossett House nursery and they also run the Little Scholars nursery on the Glyndŵr University campus. Social and education bodies recognise the nursery as one of the finest in the country. In 2007, it won the UK Nursery of the Year by the National Day Nursery Association. The nursery and its staff have even collected numerous awards over the years.
In 2009, Rachel Davies was named NDNA Nursery Carer of the Year. Peter Graham and his wife Karen, an Emeritus Professor of childhood studies at Glyndŵr University, founded the company and are proud of Rossett House’s reputation for providing top-quality care, first-class facilities and staff training. In 2018, they sold it to Rebecca Mottram, who had been with them since 2000. Peter remains a consultant while Karen helps support staff development.
World Forum in Puerto Rico
Karen Graham is a former winner of the Care Forum Wales award for excellence in services for children and young people. She has contributed to Welsh Government research studies and has addressed a World Forum for Early Care and Education conference in Puerto Rico in 2015.
“We set up originally because we wanted to provide high-quality childcare. The awards we have received prove that we are achieving that,” said Peter.
Rebecca has recently worked on a Welsh Government consultation designing the curriculum for non-maintained children over three. She pointed out that many of their staff remain with them so long that they can promote from within. Sarah Lloyd Williams and Melissa Shaw, the joint managers of Rossett House, have been there for 11 years. “We are glad that Caitlin had such fond memories of her time at Rossett House that she wanted to bring Finnley here. It’s a lovely compliment,” said Rebecca.
Original text by Gavin Hughes. Photo by kind permission of Andrew Price (NUJ). Tel: 07774 611 778;
email: firstname.lastname@example.org; viewfinderpictures.co.uk.
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