Barnardo’s takes over running of Peterborough after school club threatened with closure

The Gunthorpe Family Centre
The Gunthorpe Family Centre
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An after-school and holiday club which was threatened with closure will now remain open after charity Barnardo’s took over as its new provider.

The appointment follows the charity’s successful application to Peterborough City Council to run the Gunthorpe Family Centre early years, before and after-school, and school holiday childcare.

Barnardo’s will assume the role previously provided by Funbase and develop the childcare offer for families from September.

Eight early years and childcare providers applied for the opportunity to operate services from the centre with Barnardo’s making the shortlist of four.

It was interviewed by members of the council’s early years and childcare service and ward councillor Julia Davidson on June 21.

Barnardo’s has pledged to provide a stable, secure and relaxed setting where parents and carers feel satisfied to leave their children.

Karen Hingston, the council’s head of early years and childcare, said: “Barnardo’s is a great appointment who will make full use of the centre by operating the full range of childcare for children between the ages of two and 12. This includes pre-school care, breakfast and after school care and school holiday clubs.

“We appreciate that this has been an anxious time for some parents but truly believe that the new arrangement will bring wider benefits for the whole community with early years care included in the offer for the first time.”

Lynn McNish, Barnardo’s children’s services manager in Peterborough, said: “We are delighted to have been chosen to deliver childcare in Gunthorpe and will work closely with parents, families and the current providers in the area to ensure a smooth transition.

“We have an experienced and committed staff team in Peterborough who will support with the transfer and will ensure that families feel confident that their children remain our top priority during this time.”

Funbase will cease to provide a service from Gunthorpe Family Centre on August 18 and Barnardo’s is currently consulting with staff who wish to remain at the centre.

The Barnardo’s service is planned to commence on Monday, September 18 following a four-week period for refurbishment and some minor modification to the building.

The service will run between 7am and 6pm each weekday and during school holidays.

Consultations and discussions with families currently using the centre will commence prior to the end of term and during the summer holiday period.

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