Nursery scoops national award

Footprints Nursery staff (left to right) Debbie Randall, Suzie Yeniceri and Sarah Martin with children (left to right) Emily Hewitt, Tamlin Bean, Amelie Bilton and Lily Riley. Picture by FRANK REID
Footprints Nursery staff (left to right) Debbie Randall, Suzie Yeniceri and Sarah Martin with children (left to right) Emily Hewitt, Tamlin Bean, Amelie Bilton and Lily Riley. Picture by FRANK REID
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ECSTATIC nursery staff are celebrating after scooping a national award.

Hartlepool’s Footprints Nursery, in Tees Street, has beaten dozens of other nurseries across the country to receive the country-wide accolade for team development.

And four members of staff travelled down to the Nursery World awards ceremony in London last week where they picked up a trophy and use of the prestigious Nursery World logo for a whole year.

Suzie Yeniceri, business manager at the nursery, said: “We were all delighted and absolutely thrilled to win this award especially against some really big nursery chains.

“We’re really passionate about what we do so this was just amazing.”

The team at the nursery created a portfolio showing the Nursery World judges what they had done to best train, develop, and build good working relationships among staff.

This included how the 29 staff, students and apprentices are given opportunities to develop professionally and personally, all with the ultimate aim of providing the best quality of service for the 90 tots who have places at the nursery.

The judges were also told about a team-building staff weekend away to Scotland which went down well with all workers at the popular nursery.

And after sending off their entry, they were informed by the judges that they had won.

Suzie, 38, who lives in the town centre area of Hartlepool and has worked at the nursery for three-and-a-half years, said: “The judges didn’t feel that they needed to send anybody down to see the nursery for themselves, they handed us the award on the strength of the information that we provided because it put us to the top of the category.”

Suzie, her sister and nursery owner Sharon Birch, 45, deputy manager Lisa Henderson, 27, and room leader Joanne Sanderson, 35, all travelled to the capital for the glitzy awards bash.

“We were up against big chains and places with big money and investment and we weren’t sure that we really stood a chance,” said Suzie. “But it just shows you that it’s about what you do with what you’ve got, and the judges obviously saw something really special in us.”