Newport nursery expansion on the cards

A nursery in Newport could increase its intake by up to a third, if redevelopment plans to replace “prefabricated and second-hand” buildings are approved.

'Prefabricated and second-hand' buildings earmarked for demolition and replacement at Childrensworld nursery. Photo: Childrensworld / Claydonpoint Town Planning Ltd
'Prefabricated and second-hand' buildings earmarked for demolition and replacement at Childrensworld nursery. Photo: Childrensworld / Claydonpoint Town Planning Ltd

Based at the Mere Park Garden Centre site, Childrensworld has 78 children registered and 15 full-time staff.

Owner and director Liz Smith-Keitley has applied to demolish three outbuildings and add an extension at the west side, potentially increasing its capacity to 105.

A planning statement said it is the “first phase” of an upgrade that will lead to “more bespoke and attractive” premises.

Newport Town Council will be consulted, and Telford & Wrekin Council’s planning department will make its decision at a later date.

A statement by Thomas Jeremiah of Claydonpoint Town Planning Ltd, submitted on behalf of Childrensworld, said the site – at the northwest corner of Mere Park, next to the A41 and A518 roundabout – “was originally part of the wider garden centre operation housing nine craft units, but these were replaced in 2019 with the current nursery which opened”.

Blueprints submitted to Telford & Wrekin Council show that the three buildings earmarked for demolition are on the far west side of the site, and would be replaced by an extension to the main building.

Playrooms

This would provide two playrooms, toilets and other facilities and a covered walkway along the south and east of the play area.

“The proposals are intended to be the first phase of replacing existing buildings on the site,” Mr Jeremiah wrote.

“The existing buildings were constructed in 2018-19 using prefabricated and second-hand structures which, whilst they have served their purpose, are not considered appropriate as a long-term solution, nor are they energy-efficient.”

He wrote that later phases will be applied for and built in a staggered way to “ensure there is no disruption to the service provided to parents and guardians who rely on the facilities for childcare”.

Planning documents from 2018, when the nursery originally received permission, said it “could accommodate up to 97 children”, Mr Jeremiah added.

“The nursery currently has 78 children and 15 full-time staff,” he wrote.

“The proposed restructure of the site will be able to accommodate up to 105 which is a nominal increase of eight children to that previously approved.

“It is not considered that this nominal increase would materially impact on the overall operation of the site.”

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