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* Rabo's Small Trike (102.95) is a good choice for older toddlers because it has pedals but can also be walked along. Available from Hope (08702 433 400), the trike is strong and well made from tubular steel, and is designed not to tip, even when over-steered. * Tikes Peak (27.95) by Little Tikes is a miniature mountain with tunnels and track for both trains and road vehicles. The set also includes five vehicles, three play figures, two crossing gates and a drawbridge. It's available from Hope (08702 433 400).

* Rabo's Small Trike (102.95) is a good choice for older toddlers because it has pedals but can also be walked along. Available from Hope (08702 433 400), the trike is strong and well made from tubular steel, and is designed not to tip, even when over-steered.

* Tikes Peak (27.95) by Little Tikes is a miniature mountain with tunnels and track for both trains and road vehicles. The set also includes five vehicles, three play figures, two crossing gates and a drawbridge. It's available from Hope (08702 433 400).

* Toy doctor's sets are popular role- play accessories, but they're often flimsy and easily broken. Galt's (08702 424 477) Wooden Medical Kit (Pounds 32.95) which includes stethoscope, syringe, thermometer, reflex hammer, apron and carrying box, should last longer.

* There's little that pleases children of this age more than making music. For the sake of their developing musicality (and your eardrums) it's worth investing in simple instruments that make a good sound, for example, Galt's (08702 424 477) pre-school set (39.95) comprising maracas, jingles, a triangle, a tambourine, a tone block, castanets and a handled drum.

* The Compact Kitchen (174.40) from Wesco (01376 503 590) is a relatively inexpensive yet comprehensive answer to furnishing a home corner where space is limited. This plastic unit is a good size for the under-threes. It has a fridge, microwave, lift-out sink, eye-level shelves, a clock, a big drop-leaf table and a wall telephone.

* The Scogym Range from Wesco (01376 503 590) is one of the best gym systems available for younger children. Its colourful plastic components include balancing beams, supporting blocks of different sizes that fasten together, poles that attach to the blocks, and crescent-section 'Bumpers'. You can tailor your layouts to suit different ages and abilities, so the set can grow with the children. Scogym Motor Skills Kit No. 4 (98.30) has all the basic components plus hoops to climb through. All the kits come in strong storage bags.

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