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Oscar-winning author Charlie Mackesy OBE, who wrote ‘The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse’, opens new Holton St Peter Primary School’s ‘Sparkles Nursery’





Oscar-winning author Charlie Mackesy opened a new nursery near a Suffolk town last month.

The man behind ‘The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse’ visited children at Holton St Peter Primary School, near Halesworth, to officially open its new 30-place nursery in January.

Suffolk County Council and East Suffolk Council worked together, using a community infrastructure levy to expand the school, with the new building to be called ‘Sparkles Nursery’ for headteacher Christine Starkl.

Oscar-winning author Charlie Mackesy OBE, who wrote 'The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and The Horse' officially opened Holton St Peter Primary School's new 'Sparkles Nursery' in January. Picture: Submitted
Oscar-winning author Charlie Mackesy OBE, who wrote 'The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and The Horse' officially opened Holton St Peter Primary School's new 'Sparkles Nursery' in January. Picture: Submitted

It will be run by ASSET Education Trust.

Ms Starkl said: “I am over the moon to be able to offer a high standard facility that will give the young children of Holton and Halesworth community a fantastic start to life.

“It was my dream and vision to have a purpose-built nursery. My dream has now come true.”

Holton St Peter Primary headteacher Christine Starkl said her 'dream had come true' with being able to open the new Sparkles Nursery. Picture: Submitted
Holton St Peter Primary headteacher Christine Starkl said her 'dream had come true' with being able to open the new Sparkles Nursery. Picture: Submitted

Ms Starkl started working as a headteacher in September 2017, and opened a small nursery in Holton a year later.

The new building was created with the children and sustainability in mind, featuring PV panels and air source heat pumps to minimise running costs and the school’s carbon footprint.

Mr Mackesy won the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film at last year’s ceremony.

Andrew Reid, cabinet member for education and SEND at Suffolk County Council, said: “This is a wonderful new addition to the village. We are pleased to have been able to work with East Suffolk District Council to secure funding from the local housing development to build this nursery.”

Facilities at the new nursery include an office, kitchen, quiet room, and a classroom which leads to additional outdoor learning space with planting beds and climbing plants.

A time capsule was buried to mark the opening of the new building.

Places for children and two and three years old are still available, with more information on the school’s website.