East Durham nursery's sudden closure is 'only tip of the iceberg'

A community centre where a nursery suddenly closed has issued a new statement and insists the situation is “only the tip of the iceberg”.

Wednesday, 15th June 2022, 12:01 pm
Updated Wednesday, 15th June 2022, 5:09 pm

The centre, however, is hopeful that the nursery – rated “good” by Ofsted in its last inspection – can reopen at a later date.

The new community centre statement now says: “Horden Youth & Community Centre and the board of trustees are acutely aware of the negative response to our recent announcement regarding the nursery.

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Horden Youth and Community Centre Nursery closed suddenly last week. Picture by FRANk REID

"We fully understand why people are angry about this decision, but it has not been taken lightly or performed without due and appropriate diligence.

"We have been actively negotiating with Durham County Council and other relevant bodies to prevent this situation, but our hands are tied with regard to Charity Commission rules, Company and Employment legislation, and the requirements of DCC and Ofsted.

“We wish to assure the public that at all times, the actions of the board of trustees have been taken with the full co-operation of the relevant authorities and with due consideration for our legal responsibilities.

“This situation is, however, only the tip of the iceberg.”

The statement goes on to say that an investigation pre-dating the closure is ongoing although its nature cannot be publicly disclosed at this time.

It continues: “The board of trustees assure the public that once our investigation has been completed, and the relevant actions have been taken, a full public statement will be forthcoming.”

Meanwhile, Jim Murray, the head of education and skills at Durham County Council, has responded to the closure by saying: “We understand the majority of families affected by the closure of Horden Youth and Community Centre Nursery have found alternative provision in the area.

“Supporting those affected is our priority and we encourage those who are still seeking alternative childcare to visit www.countydurhamfamilies.info or to contact our Families Information Service on 03000 269595 or [email protected]