Grimsby Telegraph

If nursery gets too expensive I’ll take my Kids to the (industrial) park

- Richard iRvine


Before we had the twins, I used to listen in disbelief to friends with offspring swap tales of extortiona­te nursery fees. These epic figures were bandied around, and I thought my old mates must not be claiming some subsidy or sending their toddlers to a nursery version of Eton.

Well, now we’re those people and spending £600 a month to send the twins to nursery for three days a week.

This figure takes account of our weekly 30 hours free childcare, but this Government-backed freebie doesn’t include food and only covers term time, hence we’re still paying because we work over school holidays and we’d like them to eat.

Although I’m complainin­g, I’m not really, because they love nursery, the staff are superb.

The problem is the lack of choice.

For example, I tend to save Marks & Spencer’s for the weekend whereas our German friends provide a more cost-conscious approach to the rest of the week’s shopping.

Hence, I’ve decided to create a revolution in cost conscious childcare.

Firstly, staff are crucial to any operation. This is why all employees would be without a criminal record, happy to be in paid labour and generally clean. It’s important not to set the benchmark too high as the below minimum wage salary would be supplement­ed with tips and training

would be provided.

Secondly, the nursery is often contained within a large converted former family home, which carries heavy overheads. I’d suggest if a caravan is good enough for a holiday, then it’s good enough to house a few children.

And not only is a caravan mobile if the authoritie­s start asking questions, it’s got a lavatory very close to the living area to help with toilet training.

Thirdly, I’ve noticed parking at peak times around the nursery can be a struggle, so what better place to site it than an industrial estate, which has excellent parking and motorway links.

Catering could be a challenge as the kitchen is essentiall­y the nursery, but since we’re on an industrial estate there’s usually a burger van nearby.

The truth is though, a nursery is far more than just a place to leave children.

It’s somewhere they can grow into proper people, but if anyone can make the above scenario work within Government guidelines for less than a tenner a day, I might have a couple of customers for every Wednesday.

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 ??  ?? This looks an ideal spot for a nursery
This looks an ideal spot for a nursery

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