Sunderland kindergarten forced to close

Nick Dow outside Plains Farm Primary School, Sunderland, where the kindergarten is to close.
Nick Dow outside Plains Farm Primary School, Sunderland, where the kindergarten is to close.
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A KINDERGARTEN has closed despite a battle by parents to keep it open.

Mums, dads and staff found out at the start of this year that Premier Kindergarten would be axed following a funding crisis.

The nursery, an extension of Plains Farm Primary School, in Tudor Grove, Plains Farm, was not under Sunderland City Council’s control.

Businesses and members of the Plains Farm community rallied round to gather support in the hope it could be saved.

Despite parents and staff campaigning against the decision and vowing not to give up the fight until its fate was sealed, it has not been enough to prevent its closure.

Leading the campaign against the closure was Nick Dow, whose son Jack, one, went to Premier.

His wife Victoria, 27, who worked at the kindergarten, has lost her job along with several others.

Mr Dow, 44 of Farringdon, who with Victoria also has another son, Kian, five, said: “It was hard to walk out and see the kindergarten empty like that.

“The parents, children and staff were all upset at it, which you can understand. It’s very sad.”

Parents of more than 30 children are now having to find alternative childcare arrangements.

“A number of parents have sorted places for their kids,” said Mr Dow.

“Some of the parents have decided to get them into new places straight away but others might not put them in somewhere else,” he said.

“Me and Victoria need to look for somewhere for Jack now and it isn’t easy, but we need childcare arranging.”

Mr Dow also said even though Premier has closed, it has been “a happier ending than we thought it would,” after Victoria and other workers were able to find new positions on the day of the closure.

“All of the girls have either taken jobs or got new positions, apart from one but that was her choice,” he said.

He added that he would like to thank all of those who had tried to stop the closure.

“We’ve got to say hats off to the council’s Family Services department for their help.

“And personally, I’d like to thank everyone who helped us.

“A massive thanks must also go to City Travel as well as all of those who supported our campaign.”

Twitter: @davidallison88