Parents celebrate new childcare provision in Thamesmead

Published Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Families in Thamesmead have marked the official opening of a new 32 place childcare provision for two-year-olds, with a celebration lunch.

The new facility is based at Waterways Children's Centre on Southwood Road, one of ten centres operated in the borough by GLL - it is housed in a dedicated building for two-year-olds known as 'The Island'.

Staff and parents were joined by Councillor John Fahy, Deputy Leader of the Royal Borough of Greenwich and Cabinet Member for Children's Services, and Peter Bundey, Deputy Managing Director (GLL) who welcomed the new provision, which is the latest in a number of developments aimed at expanding the facilities for families with young children.

The new provision offers childcare for children aged two years across Thamesmead and Abbey Wood who are entitled to three hours free childcare through the council's Together for Twos scheme.

The celebration gave families an opportunity to enjoy the nursery's indoor and outdoor play facilities, which include puzzles, books, dressing-up, and musical instruments inside, and water and sand play, painting and collage, and a slide outside.

Councillor Fahy said: "Our Children's Centres continue to offer a wide range of services that make a vital difference to the lives of young children and their families.

"This new facility for two-year-olds is the latest in a series of improvements and will be greatly welcomed by local families in the east of the borough.

"The Royal Borough is committed to offering a wide range of childcare and to work with GLL and other provider organisations across the borough to offer further improvements to the services that children's centres are able to offer to families."

Lisa Walsh, Strategic Lead, East Greenwich Children's Centres at GLL, said: "We are absolutely delighted to be able to offer this high quality provision for two-year-olds in the area, giving them access to new activities and an exciting place to play, socialise with other children and make friends. This early learning opportunity benefits the whole family in supporting them to take advantage of the full range of activities and services in the Children's Centre."

GLL, which operates all the public leisure centres and libraries on behalf of the Royal Borough of Greenwich, operates ten children's centres across the east and south of the Borough.

Notes to editors:

  1. Together for Twos is a borough-wide scheme enabling families whose low income makes them eligible for certain benefits to apply for 15 hours of free childcare a week. Families who qualify for the scheme can take advantage of one of the approved childminders, nurseries or Children's Centres operating in the borough. For details visit the, call the Families Information Service on 020 8921 6921, or email
  2. Established in 1993, GLL is the largest UK-based charitable social enterprise delivering leisure, health and community services. They operate over 170 public sport and leisure centres and 28 libraries (including five prison libraries) in partnership with over 30 local councils, public agencies and sporting organisations. Their leisure facilities enjoy more than 40 million visitors a year with over 490,000 members. Alongside their core leisure and library divisions, they operate in sport and legacy development, health intervention and education - as well as offering the GLL Sports Foundation, one of the largest independent support programmes for talented young athletes in the UK.

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