The 100-place Children 1st @ Rosemary Lane nursery, formerly known as Children 1st @ Monks Road, was completely remodelled during the year and a half refurbishment as part of a project designed by local company, Core Architects.
Children 1st purchased the original site’s adjoining building and car park in order to provide improved parking facilities, a remodelled entrance and a completely redeveloped garden.
The new-look nursery now boasts CCTV and electronic access, a dedicated baby suite, areas for toddlers including a market place, farm area, ball pool and woodland story room, a glass lift to access all areas of the four-storey building, a Food Tech zone where children can experiment with cooking, and a staff training facility.
Children from the setting were involved in the process throughout, from initial consultations about what they wanted in their new nursery to donning hard hats and hi-vis jackets to help with painting and watch cement being poured.
The project was fully funded and managed by Children 1st and led by group director Adrian Mason.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony, accompanied by an RAF band, was attended by Mayor and Mayoress of Lincoln, councillors Chris and Sue Burke, as well as local MP Karen Lee and representatives of the health and education sectors and local businesses.
Mayor of Lincoln Cllr Chris Burke cuts the ribbon with (From L-R) Lady Mayoress Cllr Sue Burke, Purnima Tanuku (chief executive National Day Nurseries Association), Margaret Mason (founder of Children 1st Day Nurseries) and Karen Lee MP for Lincoln.
The opening ceremony also featured a cheque presentation for £5,000 from Children 1st to the Lincoln County Hospital Children’s Ward.
Margaret Mason, founder and chief executive of Children 1st, said, ‘As our name suggests, children are the heart of our business and I’m delighted that they are now able to enjoy the outcome of this wonderful transformation.
‘I am very proud of the exceptional environment we have created and thank everyone who has been involved in the work. Particular thanks go to parents at Rosemary Lane who have been with us throughout the project. We hope they now see that the disruption was worth it.’
In addition to Rosemary Lane, Children 1st owns two other nurseries in Lincoln.
Both Children 1st @ Wragby Road and Children 1st @ The Marina have also undergone extensive refurbishment work since they were purchased by Children 1st in 2014.
Children 1st operates 23 nurseries in the north of England and the Midlands.
It was the 14th largest nursery chain in the UK and came third in the quality table in Nursery Chains, published last November, with all of its settings rated Good or Outstanding by Ofsted.