Ten nurseries close in Norfolk leaving 450 families without childcare

Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Early Years Alliance, said:

“Looking at the details of this story it’s hard to see how early years funding has not become a major election issue. There’s no doubt that the scale of this closure is shocking and of course our first thoughts are with the staff and those associated with the nurseries – but, sadly, it’s been a long time coming.

“This hasn’t happened in a vacuum. We’ve warned and warned ministers about the impact underfunding is having on providers - and each of these warnings have been backed up by statistics: it’s a matter of record that fewer than half of parents accessing funded places get them genuinely “free”, and thousands of providers, particularly in poorer areas, are closing at an unprecedented rate.

“Instead of listening to us and taking action, we’ve had a raft of policies from all parties’ that will make these sort of closures even more likely.  We simply can’t go on like this and it’s high time we had an honest conversation about the true cost of delivering childcare the real impact of ever more generous ‘free’ hours on both parents and providers.”

ENDS
 

About the Alliance

  • The Early Years Alliance is the largest and most representative early years membership organisation in England. A registered educational charity, it also provides high-quality affordable childcare and education to support children and families in areas of deprivation throughout the country.
  • The Alliance represents 14,000 members and supports them to deliver care and learning to more than 800,000 families every year. We deliver family learning projects, offer information and advice, produce specialist publications, run acclaimed training programmes and campaign to influence early years policy and practice.
  • The Alliance website is www.eyalliance.org.uk