No' to nursery school plan
PUBLISHED: 13:16 02 February 2007 | UPDATED: 22:33 28 May 2010
DAY care entrepreneur Deborah Hutler described a Government inspector s ban on her operating a children s nursery in March as a tragedy . She told the Cambs Times: This is a much-needed service and there simply isn t the quality of care available in thi
DAY care entrepreneur Deborah Hutler described a Government inspector's ban on her operating a children's nursery in March as "a tragedy".
She told the Cambs Times: "This is a much-needed service and there simply isn't the quality of care available in this town."
While agreeing its opening would be "in accordance with central and local government initiatives to support enterprise in the Fenland areas", the inspector said highways and noise implications made the premises unsuitable.
He supported decisions by Fenland District Council which had twice rejected bids by Mrs Hutler to convert Blackberry House, in The Causeway.
However, Mrs Hutler said she was determined to continue her fight to use the house for a children's day nursery and was now considering legal action.
In the meantime it was "business as usual" for the child minding service which she can run legally from the house, and for which she has a waiting list.
Ironically while Fenland councillors supported some 63 people who signed a petition opposed to the change of use, council officials said her second bid, to reduce numbers from 42 to 20, and staffing from eight to four, was acceptable.
And Cambridgeshire County Council also welcomed the day care nursery, even offering Mrs Hutler a grant after an OfSTED inspection and following her successful stewardship of day nurseries in Wisbech.
However, the inspector, Brian Bagot, felt that a "serious reduction in highway safety" and the rise in noise levels would outweigh the growing demand for day nursery provision.
He added: "The number of on-street spaces close to the property would be insufficient for parents bringing them to and from nursery, particularly during the morning peak hour and the period from midday-1.30pm.