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Neath Port Talbot Council to expand childcare offering

New Childcare Offer for Wales setting to help boost facilities for working parents

A brand new childcare setting has been completed at Waunceirch Primary School as part of Neath Port Talbot Council’s bid to offer more childcare facilities for working parents.

The £700K setting was jointly funded with Welsh Government providing a grant of £610,000, plus an additional £90,799 from the Council. It is the first of a number of settings to be based within schools, totalling more than £4m of investment via Welsh Government’s Childcare Offer for Wales Capital funding and the 21st Century Schools programme.

Further childcare settings planned at Abbey Primary School (Neath) and Rhos Primary are underway in readiness for 2022. Plus, additional Welsh Government funding will be used to complete two further Welsh medium childcare settings at Ysgol Gynradd Gymraeg Tyle’r Ynn in Briton Ferry and Cwmllynfell Primary School, due to open in September 2021.

The locations for the settings have been chosen based on Neath Port Talbot’s annual Childcare Sufficiency Audit, identifying a current lack of childcare facilities to serve the Childcare Offer for Wales in certain areas.

Councillor Peter Rees, Cabinet Member for Education, Skills and Culture, said: “I am delighted to see the first childcare setting open at Waunceirch Primary School.

“We are committed to providing additional facilities across the county borough to help ensure childcare isn’t a barrier for those parents who want to return to work.

“Childcare settings can also be a great way for children to meet new friends, develop social skills and learn new skills in time for when they start full-time schooling.”

The setting, known as Woodlands Childcare, has capacity to care for up to 32 children between the ages of 2 and 12. They offer a range of services such as Before School Club, full day and half day care, wrap-around care, After School Club and Holiday Club sessions. Plus, they provide a transport service to and from local primary schools, family homes and extra-curricular after school clubs.

Nicola Manley, the owner of Woodlands Childcare, said: “I feel very privileged to be part of the council’s commitment to develop childcare facilities for children and families in the community. The new premises enable us to offer high quality experiences and provide an easy transition to school, where children make friends and parents benefit from all children being at the same provision at the end of the day.”

The funding for the settings is part of Welsh Government’s Childcare Offer scheme which aims to help with childcare costs for working parents of 3 to 4 year olds. Parents can claim up to 30 hours of early education and childcare a week, for up to 48 weeks of the year via the scheme.

To find out more about the Childcare Offer and to apply, visit: www.npt.gov.uk/childcareoffer

For more information about Woodlands Childcare, email [email protected] .