Family-run nursery which started life at West Suffolk Hospital celebrates 30th anniversary

Springfield Day Nursery were celebrating their 30th birthday ANL-141020-153758009
Springfield Day Nursery were celebrating their 30th birthday ANL-141020-153758009

A successful family-run nursery, which started after a group at West Suffolk Hospital was privatised, has celebrated its 30th anniversary.

Springfield Day Nursery was born in 1984 after then nursery matron Sally Walker saw the potential of the group, which was originally funded by the hospital to cater for staff, and bought it.

Since then it has gone from strength to strength - moving to its base in Springfield Road and offering a wealth of creative activities for youngsters.

Mrs Walker, who now owns the nursery with her daughter Sarah Orford, said: “I knew we wouldn’t have such strict guidelines if we were financing it.

“We could spend the money how we saw fit that could include other activities - things you don’t get in most other nurseries.”

These include Spanish, woodwork, cookery, dancing and music.

Mrs Walker, who trained with London County Council in residential nurseries, added: “You need to provide endless opportunities and they can do whichever ones suit them.”

In 2002, the nursery extended to provide further childcare for younger children.

To celebrate its 30th anniversary neighbour Winn Farr, aged 94, cut the anniversary cake and was helped by Mel Notley who has worked at the nursery for 24 years.

Noting how the nursery has benefitted parents, Mrs Walker said: “The youngest child we’ve ever had was two weeks and that mother was starting a course at West Suffolk College. Had she not started that September should would have had to wait a year. That mother is now a qualified lecturer.”

Praising the nursery’s ‘excellent staff’, she said: “Hopefully we will carry on for another 30 years.”