Nursery to get £20k expansion

Manager Jill Craig with staff members and children, who are looking forward to the extension.
Manager Jill Craig with staff members and children, who are looking forward to the extension.

A £20,000 project to renovate and expand a nursery is expected to get underway next week.

The work at the facility at Kinsley and Fitzwilliam Learning and Community Centre means the nursery will be able to take an additional 20 children when the extension is completed around Easter.

And it will create new jobs for people living in the area.

Nursery manager Jill Craig said: “At the moment we open 8am until 6pm all year round. We have around 29 children per day, ranging from three months up to five-years-old.

“We are hoping to take at least another 20 children, including more under the two-year-old early education offer.

“We have already been advertising for staff and have recently taken on two more employees.

“We are also looking to take on more.”

The project is being funded through Wakefield Council’s £1.05m Local Capital Grant Programme.

A total of £19,974 has been allocated to refurbish space at the centre, purchase new nursery equipment and upgrade the phone system.

Hemsworth councillor Sandra Pickin said: “The money is to be used for refurbishing the old beauty therapy salon part of the centre, which is little used now.

“We plan to strip all that out and expand the nursery.

“It has got a waiting list of children wanting to come and it has done for a while, so we feel it is something much-needed that the community will benefit from.”

The local authority is investing £50,000 into each of the 21 council wards across the district.

Councillors, residents, voluntary organisations and community groups have been working together to identify projects to benefit from the funding boost.

Other projects in the South East of the district include improvements at Hemsworth Miners Welfare Cricket Club and Hemsworth Miners Welfare Community Football Club, roof repairs at Kinsley Boys Football Club and renovations at Kinsley Craft Workshop.

Announcing the funding last month, Coun Denise Jeffery, cabinet member for economic growth and skills, said: “The funding has been devolved to local areas to fund specific projects in wards, benefiting the local communities where they need it.”