In the beginning there was Ray and Glenda.
Ray was writing software for fire and gas safety systems and then commissioning it offshore in the oil and gas industry. His passion for all things IT has always been evident.
Glenda was happy in her role as deputy head at a local infant school. Her passion for children and their development has been unwavering We had spoken many times about starting something together, a Tea Shop, Bed and Breakfast, but nothing had really grabbed our imagination and anyway, both of us were happy and moderately successful in our chosen careers. Happy that is until the arrival of our beautiful grandchild Molly in January 2007.
Molly’s mum Jenna was anxious to return to the work place and so the search for a suitable nursery began. It seemed that we’d been looking around at nurseries for Molly for ages. Frankly, we couldn’t find anywhere that we were totally happy with. A light bulb moment!! and a plan was hatched.
What a brilliant idea to open our own children’s nursery, not just any old nursery though. If we were going to do it at all it was going to have to be the best, a centre of excellence.
It all happened very quickly after that. The old school was found and it was perfect. Full of character and history in its long life of educating children since 1873, we completed the purchase in April 2008.
No upper floors, over an acre of outside space to play in, it couldn’t have been better. Ray was needed offshore and so Jenna and I were left to start the project. It would be fun. After all what could go wrong? Nothing really, oh except that the building had been empty and boarded up for two years, everything needed painting, all the floors needed replacing and even some of the windows had to be replaced.
The grounds had been left to turn into a wilderness. None of us were decorators or gardeners and this was a time when we wondered what on earth we were thinking of taking on such massive task. Jenna and I did what we could, which was mostly paperwork, until Rays return. He found us sitting on the steps outside what is now the pre-school with our heads resting heavily in our hands. We were simply overwhelmed at the enormity of the task that lay before us.
So, after some discussion, we chose a small area to concentrate on and did that. Next we chose another small area and so on and so on, until we had completed it. Everyone helped, our son David, Jenna’s friends, our friends, anyone’s friends we could get.
Many many favours later and an amazingly quick five months, on Monday 1st September 2008 The Day Nursery opened its doors.
One child attended, Molly our grandchild. But quickly the word spread and more children joined. In the early days David worked with us as our cook and our first practitioners worked without pay. Thank you guys!
Gradually our nursery grew and it continues to do so to this day.
The journey so far has been no fairy tale. There have been very dark times where it seemed that no matter how hard we worked everything was against us and frankly just not worth the effort. Mistakes in recruitment were made which resulted in the wrong people infiltrating the team. It was quickly realised that the Day Nursery team is its biggest asset.
These days the recruitment is much more robust, we continue to invest and improve our provision. Our focus has never changed and we continue to build a centre of excellence.