Spotlight on ... Julie Barber

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Name: Julie Barber

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Position: Manager of Little Acorns Nursery in Rothwell, Leeds

- How did you celebrate winning Nursery Manager of the Year in the group's annual awards?

Unbeknown to me, staff and parents at the nursery organised a party with banners and photos for my return from the awards ceremony. My area co-ordinator had called the nursery to tell them I had won an award.

- Where were the awards held?

At a warehouse next door to Little Acorns' head office in Warrington. The awards had a barn-dance theme, with a fortune teller and fairground games, including 'hook-a-duck'.

- How long have you worked at the nursery?

I've been at the nursery for 18 months. Little Acorns took over the setting from a private operator in October 2009. We've made a lot of changes to the nursery over the past 18 months and the staff have really embraced the new way of working. They have told me that they feel like professionals now. Our next challenge is working towards achieving an outstanding rating from Ofsted.

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