Argyll and Bute Council has gifted a piece of land to a nursery on Bute to enable it to grow and create additional childcare places for young people on the island.
Apple Tree Nursery is based in Rothesay and the land concerned is at the rear of Rothesay Pavilion, adjoining the nursery. By gifting Apple Tree this land, it will enable the nursery to increase provision for young people in the area – something strongly supported by the council’s education services as part of the Scottish Government’s 1140 hours requirement.
It is also a prime example of how Argyll and Bute Council is working with its partners to take forward the national policy – a request made to all local authorities by the Scottish Government as part of the implementation of the additional hours.
The council’s Policy Lead for Education, Councillor Yvonne McNeilly, said: “Apple Tree is the only year-round childcare provider on Bute and has just 12 places for children under the age of three.
“This land will provide the nursery with the opportunity to expand and ensure our children and young people are getting the very best start in life. We want our young people to thrive and a significant aspect of delivering quality pre-5 education across Argyll and Bute is outdoor learning.
"We expect a minimum of 50% of time to be spent in quality learning outdoors. Apple Tree does this extremely well within a very limited space but this land will enable them to enhance their outdoor provision.
“Apple Tree is already delivering 1140 hours childcare and recent questionnaires returned show parents are delighted with the service. A number have been able to work, increase hours or take up a college course as a result of the increased hours. Plans to extend the nursery will only help this to rise and I’m delighted that we can help.”