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Double digit celebration for hospital nursery

Updated: Feb 10

Children, staff and parents gathered to mark the 20th birthday of Tiny Tugs, Medway Maritime Hospital’s on-site nursery last month, with a celebratory tea two decades to the day since it opened on 19 January 2004.

The nursery, for children of staff working for Medway NHS Foundation Trust, was built during 2003, when Nursery Manager, Amanda Richards joined to oversee it’s build.

She said: “We have cared for around 30,000 children since we opened and many of those started their journey with us from a baby to a toddler to a pre-schooler and then finally graduation to big school.

“When I speak to colleagues whose children came here many years ago and their child is now grown up at college, university or forging a successful career they still fondly remember their time at nursery.”

Tim Cowell’s son Oliver was one of the first children to attend the nursery. Now 22 he is working in the Royal Navy as a leading engineering technician for weapons and communication systems.

Oliver said: “I loved my time at Tiny Tugs. I remember Amanda and her fantastic team. I will never forget how kind they were to me.”

Tim, one of the Trust’s Senior Facilities Managers said: “Being a single parent whilst trying to hold down a full-time job was an extremely challenging time. The Trust introducing Tiny Tugs helped greatly as it took the pressure off allowing me to do my job in the knowledge Oliver was in safe hands and under the great care of the nursery staff.”

The nursery has seen many memorable events since its opening, from the very first graduation ceremony, summer fetes, a 10th birthday party to celebrating the King’s Coronation in May 2023.

Amanda added: “The nursery prides itself on being a warm, welcoming, family friendly environment and myself and the team look forward to welcoming many more staff and their little ones through our doors.”

The nursery was established as a result of the NHS childcare strategy developed in 2001. The strategy focussed on the recruitment and retention of staff to return or remain in the health service by providing good quality, accessible and affordable childcare.

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