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Manager of Little Willows Childcare at Fornham St Genevieve near Bury St Edmunds speaks of vision for nursery





The manager of a new childcare setting has spoken of her excitement ahead of opening the new child-led and outdoor-focused facility.

Katrina Rose now has the keys for Little Willows Childcare, based at Park Farm Business Centre in Fornham St Genevieve, near Bury St Edmunds.

Previously the manager of Little Acorns Childcare in Bury, she is recruiting a team of experienced early years staff and hopes the nursery will open in early September, subject to Ofsted checks.

Little Willows Childcare is planned to open in Fornham St Genevieve in September. Pictured is the manager Katrina Rose. Picture: Mark Westley
Little Willows Childcare is planned to open in Fornham St Genevieve in September. Pictured is the manager Katrina Rose. Picture: Mark Westley

Little Willows’ manager Mrs Rose said with a major lack of childcare provision in the area, and more and more parents needing this facility, they were ‘determined’ to make their nursery ‘the best in Bury’.

Taking children from nine months to five years, the setting will prioritise child-led play and there will be a wide range of outdoor learning, with it boasting a large outdoor space.

Mrs Rose, from Bury, talked of a ‘curiosity approach’ with a team of staff who can extend the children’s learning based on their interests. There will also be a ‘family feel’ there, she said.

Manager Katrina Rose got the keys to the building last month. Picture: Mark Westley
Manager Katrina Rose got the keys to the building last month. Picture: Mark Westley

“The location of the nursery is just perfect for our vision,” she said. “It’s a building that looks like a barn and surrounded by fields and just nature. It’s going to be so beautiful.

“The ethos we have got is the children will learn outdoors as much as possible to play wild, be free and love learning, and we will also have an indoor environment for them which is going to be amazing for them too.”

Mrs Rose said one of the unique selling points of Little Willows, as well as the large outdoor area, will be a sensory room for children to take some time out and regulate and be calm.

There will also be a dedicated baby room and there are plans for a secret garden.

“It’s just going to be amazing. It’s a lot of hard work that we are putting in to get it all ready,” added Mrs Rose.

She said she had been ‘inundated’ with applications for positions at the setting, despite her concerns over the current recruitment crisis in early years.

Preparations are under way for Little Willows Childcare in Fornham St Genevieve to open in September. Picture: Mark Westley
Preparations are under way for Little Willows Childcare in Fornham St Genevieve to open in September. Picture: Mark Westley

“It’s lovely to have so many passionate people wanting to come and be a part of this,” she said. “I just know we are going to have an amazing team of staff to support these children. Lots of experience and qualifications…I’m so excited about it.”

Little Willows Childcare will take up to 28 children at any one time.

It currently have more than 40 children through expressions of interest and is looking to get 50-60 youngsters on its books.

In terms of a need for childcare places, Mrs Rose said: “So many settings have closed over the last few years.

“Covid has had a massive impact and, even as these places are closing, the need for these spaces is increasing as more and more parents are forced back to work early.”

The building is being kitted out ahead of opening, with some resources coming in through donations.

For more information, see the Facebook page.

If you would like to get in touch with Mrs Rose contact her on 07943 797360.