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Work gets under way to deliver £24m nursery plan

Five new facilities will be built by August 2020

Crookfur sod cutting

The council's ambitious £24m development of five new nurseries is now under way after the first sod was cut at the site of the new Crookfur Family Centre.

Children from Crookfur Primary Nursery Class joined councillors, council staff and contractors to mark the important milestone for the project.

The new-build facilities, three of which will operate as family centres providing childcare for 50 weeks of the year, are planned to be open by August 2020.

With the council required to provide increased free childcare for all three and four-year-olds and eligible two-year-olds by 2020, the new nurseries will play a significant part in delivering this.

As part of the move Crookfur Primary Nursery Class will be relocated to this new facility on the site of the former Crookfur Pavilion.

Once opened, the facility will continue to be managed by Crookfur Primary Head Teacher Sheena McGuigan and will offer more places than available at present, as well as opening all year round, rather than just term time.

It's exciting to reach this important milestone in our early years expansion plan, which will see five new state-of-the-art nurseries created. They will provide fantastic facilities for our youngest learners, with amazing outdoor space to allow them to expand their curiosity through play. This marks the start of this ambitious project and work on all five new sites will get under way over the next few months. We are committed to providing the very best learning environment for all the children and young people in East Renfrewshire and this project will deliver just that for our residents. Councillor Paul O'Kane, Convener for Education and Equalities

Local authorities currently provide 600 free hours a year and this will increase to 1,140, which is in effect a rise to 30 hours per week, matching the time children spend each week in primary school.

In addition to the Crookfur facility, the new nurseries will be built within Overlee Park, a replacement for Glenwood Family Centre on an adjacent site, and two new centres within the grounds of Busby and Eaglesham primaries.

As part of the work to create new nursery facilities the council is also proposing to incorporate improved community and sports facilities within two of the centres.

The existing Crookfur and Overlee pavilions are both in need of significant improvements, and will benefit from being included in these new facilities.

The other nurseries also being developed as part of the expansion plan, include a new 60 place nursery class extension at Cross Arthurlie Primary, plus improved facilities at Hazeldene Family centre, Carolside Nursery Class and Braidbar Nursery Class.

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