This week I had the pleasure of visiting Ashgrove Park Day Nursery and meeting the staff and children. Located on Ashgrove Road, Ashley Down BS7 9LQ, Ashgrove Park Day Nursery boasts a ‘Good’ Ofsted rating and is open every day of the week from 8.15am – 5.45pm (apart from bank holidays).
Ashgrove Park is the sister nursery to Clyde House Day Nursery (situated just off Gloucester Road on Nevil Road, Bishopston) and has been providing care for local babies and young children aged 0 – 5 for an impressive 25 years!
I met the owner of Ashgrove Park Day Nursery, Lisa Mann (whose child attends Ashgrove Park) and the General Manager, Sue Bennett to find out more.
I also went on a full tour of the nursery and met all the staff who are all very friendly, kind and approachable, plus all highly qualified in childcare; the majority have a NVQ Level 3 or above, plus all are trained in first aid and food hygiene.
There is a distinct family atmosphere at Ashgrove Park and strong partnerships between both staff and parents.
A lot of this is down to the very low staff turnover at Ashgrove Park; on average, staff have been at Ashgrove for eight years, with many more longer-serving members. Because of this staff are able to build strong relationships with parents over a long-term period.
Parents are also involved daily on their children’s activities at Ashgrove through the use of online updates and images which they are sent via an online app which Ashgrove Park uses. Keyworkers for each child are on-hand every morning and evening, providing daily feedback to parents.
There are also Keyworker meetings with parents twice a year and regular activities organised by parents and Ashgrove such as Mums’ nights and Dads’ nights, plus an annual Summer Tea Party for parents, children, grandparents and so on!
Both the staff and parents at Ashgrove Park also regularly work together to raise money for charity, in fact, last year they raised over £800 for charity through cake sales and raffles.
There are lots of nice toys and activities for babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers at Ashgrove Park. The babies there were happy and clearly contented and it was lovely to see them play and to watch how well staff interacted with them.
There were also lots of toys, games and fun activities for the toddlers and pre-schoolers at Ashgrove Park and I enjoyed watching some of the 2-year olds do some pizza making!
Ashgrove Park offers a fantastic outdoor space which is safe and private and where children spend at least 3 hours every day. It includes a playground and a Sensory garden with a digging bed, plus lots of bikes, toys and play equipment for children to enjoy.
This outdoor space is also part covered to protect children from the elements so that during free-flow sessions they can choose to spend even more time outside if they wish!
Meals for children at Ashgrove Park are always home-made on the premises, plus wholesome and source their food locally, for example, Scoopaway on Gloucester Road.
Lunch on the day I was visiting was Roast chicken and I noted that other regular meals on the menu include Savoury Mince, Cauliflower and Broccoli Cheese, Tuna Pasta Salad, Meat Balls, Spaghetti Bolognese, Fish and Parsley sauce and even Chicken Tikka.
Lisa and Sue explained that a lot of veggies always accompany each meal and that the nursery’s special 7 Veg Sauce is very popular with the children!
Children also enjoy regular morning and afternoon snack times throughout their day, with snacks including veggie sticks, milk, crumpets and fruit.
Children with special dietary requirements are always catered for, for example egg-free meals or dairy-free, plus cultural needs are also upheld. The nursery also has a five out of 5 star food hygiene certificate.
Some of the older children at Ashgrove Park will be starting primary school in September and Lisa and Sue explained that Ashgrove is preparing them for their reception year in several ways.
In June they will be putting up pictures of children due to be starting school in September ’16 according to the different schools they will be going to so that children know which of their friends they will be in school with.
Ashgrove Park Day Nursery will also be taking children on trips to their new schools and teachers will be visiting the nursery so as to ease the transition from nursery to big school. Transition records are also completed by children’s keyworkers at Ashgrove Park and then given to the child’s school.
Children also enjoy regular phonics, counting and Makaton games; all of which give children a great basis for their learning and development when they go to primary school.
I was genuinely impressed with Ashgrove Park Day Nursery. It had a great atmosphere, was pleasant and well-run and the babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers were clearly happy and enjoying their time there.
If you are currently looking for quality childcare for your child, I would rate Ashgrove Park Day Nursery very highly.
To find out more about Ashgrove Park day Nursery, please visit http://www.ashgroveandclydenurseries.com/.
Alternatively, you can contact Ashgrove Park directly by phoning 0117 9513 123 or emailing