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Parents upset as Ormskirk nursery forced to close

Ducklings are no longer allowed to rent the rooms at Emmanuel Church

Children at Ducklings Pre-School group at Ormskirk Emmanuel Church, wearing their Easter bonnets. PICTURE BY DENNIS BRADBURY

Parents are having to find a new place for their children after an Ormskirk nursery announced its shock closure.

Ducklings nursery sent an email to parents last week telling them that the nursery would be closing at the end of August because Emmanuel Church would no longer allow them to rent the rooms.

The nursery, run by Barrie and Janet Dawson has been open for 40 years and caters for children aged 1-4.

The church has offered the nursery an extension until Christmas to find alternative premises but because the owners couldn’t guarantee they would have found somewhere by then they have decided to close at the end of summer, rather than disrupt the academic year.

Several parents have contacted the Advertiser to express their dismay a the closure.

Rose Watts, 32, from Ormskirk has a 19-month-old son, Max who attends the nursery.

She said: “I’m just really upset that the nursery has been forced to close.

“When I got the email I couldn’t believe it, Max has been going there since he was one and has really settled in there with the other children and staff.

“I’m currently pregnant and was planning on sending my next baby to ducklings as well because I’ve been so happy with it.

“Now I’ve got the stress of trying to find somewhere else for Max, it’s just such a shame.

“The Church has yet to answer what they are prioritising over the children in the local community, and local jobs. I feel they should have to explain their decision, as part of the community.

“The nursery has always been very flexible with their hours and it’s going to be very hard to find somewhere as accommodating as Ducklings.”

The Minister of Emmanuel Church, Melvyn Kelly declined to offer a formal comment but said that Ducklings is not within the control of the Church. so the decision to close it did not lie with them.

Janet and Barrie Dawson said: Ducklings Nursery has had to close as the Church Council at Emmanuel Church have served notice that they will no longer rent rooms to us.

“There was no dialogue to accommodate our search for new premises, the Church Council gave us a deadline to vacate the premises and we have been unable to secure an alternative in the timescale they set.

“As a result we have no option other than to close on the 31st August.

“We would like to express our thanks to the parents for their kind support and understanding during this time.”