A new £1.5million nursery in Sunderland has kicked off in style.
Former SAFC skipper Kevin Ball was among those invited to take the first look around the Kids 1st Ashbrooke facility.
Located in Gorse Road, the nursery is the twelfth for the award-winning Kids 1st group, and the first one in the city.
Employing 25 full-time staff, the nursery has 108 places to provide childcare for children aged three-months to five years old.
There is a large enclosed garden and a separate dining room.
Wearside’s business community joined local residents for the first tour of the nursery.
It was then opened to the public, with 36 families taking the opportunity to view the bright spacious rooms and outdoor play areas while the children had fun meeting the SAFC Mascots, Samson and Delilah.
Kelly Walsh, senior area manager at Kids 1st, said: “We are delighted to have opened our twelfth nursery in Sunderland in our twelfth year in business.
“Sunderland is particularly special to us as we have been looking for a location to build here for a while. We have already made links with local organisations, including the Foundation of Light, and are thrilled to be part of the city of Sunderland.”
Nursery manager Tracey Winter is delighted to be heading up the nursery.
Tracey, who has worked at Kids 1st since 2006, said: “I am looking forward to getting to know all of the families that have already booked places with us. I am so proud to have been offered this fantastic opportunity.”
Since their first nursery was built in 2004, Kids 1st has established itself as one of the leading childcare providers in the North East and the whole of the UK.
It has been named the ‘Highest Quality Childcare Provider in the UK’ by Nursery World for four consecutive years and has achieved 13 outstanding Ofsted reports in 12 years of business.
All the nurseries provide home-cooked food, fingerprint entry systems, a dedicated pre-school, extra-curricular classes and electronic whiteboards. Parents can also enjoy a free coffee-to-go breakfast service each morning.