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Ministers plan to change the way that nurseries and childminders are funded through local authorities, in a move towards developing a new national funding formula for free early education places.

The number of Sure Start Centres in Portsmouth will be cut to save up to 1 million in 2013/14.

The Old Station Nursery's Henley-on-Thames setting will reduce the cost of childcare from April, which could mean a saving for parents with a child on a part-time place of up to 2,730 a year.

Ministers are planning to introduce a new national funding formula for all early education places.

Following yesterday's pre-Budget announcement that the Government would extend tax-free childcare to more families, the Chancellor's speech was light on further support for children and families.

Children's charities are concerned that families will have to wait for more than two years before the new tax-free childcare system is brought in and that not enough is being done to support families on the lowest incomes.

Early years and childcare organisations responding to the Government's announcement that childcare vouchers will be extended to more working families are calling for a more simplified funding system that would pay providers directly.

Families with children under five will be able to claim up to 1,200 per child a year in tax-free childcare through a scheme announced by the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister today.

Around 240,000 new primary school places are needed by 2014/15 to meet increased demand, according to new research by the National Audit Office.

The trial of a new programme to support children aged between six months and five-years-old at risk of recurring abuse has received more than 1m in lottery funding.