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News3rd March 2021

Ark Start Oval nursery opens its door to Croydon families

On Monday, Ark Start Oval, a new nursey in East Croydon opened its doors to families (1 March).

The nursery welcomed 26 families and their young children into the purpose-built nursery, which is made of recycled shipping containers.

Ark Start is a pilot early years programme providing high quality, affordable childcare to families. The programme helps parents engage with their children’s nursery experience and access the broader support and services they need, Ark Start also aims to shape broader policy and funding decisions on early years provision.

Nursery Headteacher Lydia Cuddy-Gibbs said:

“We are thrilled that we have been able to welcome families this week. With COVID-19 restrictions, it has taken us longer to open, and we know the demand for places is high. This has been a challenging year, but I am proud of how hard everyone has worked to ensure we could open safely.

“I hope families joining us love the space and what we are trying to achieve at Ark Start Oval. We hope to give every child the best start in life by providing high quality, flexible and affordable childcare, and education.

“Children coming to our nursey will play, learn, grow and thrive. Our fantastic staff will support families to help their children fulfil their potential.”

Thomas, whose two-year-old daughter has joined the nursery said:

“Art Start Oval is an excellent addition to the community. Our daughter enjoyed her initial visit so much and we cannot wait to see her develop over time.  We were very happy with the light, bright and airy space and knew as soon as we arrived that this was the correct place for our daughter. The team are so engaging, and it is clear Eva is in great hands.” 

Ark Start Oval is funded by the DfE and is next to Ark Oval Primary Academy and joins Ark Start John Archer, which opened in October 2020 at Ark John Archer Academy in Clapham Junction. 

Families interested in a place at Ark Start Oval can visit the website or call the team on 0203 116 6338.