New centre opens for Felixstowe children

CHILDREN in Felixstowe are set to benefit from a massive investment in a new centre designed to give them the best possible start in life.The new £1,35million Oaks Children's Centre in the grounds of Grange Primary School, Grange Road, was officially opened at the weekend with the chance for families to see what it will provide.

CHILDREN in Felixstowe are set to benefit from a massive investment in a new centre designed to give them the best possible start in life.

The new £1,35million Oaks Children's Centre in the grounds of Grange Primary School, Grange Road, was officially opened at the weekend with the chance for families to see what it will provide.

Suffolk County Council have led the development, a purpose-built facility that will offer affordable, quality childcare to parents in the area with early learning for young children, health services, family support, a base for childminders and help into employment, including links with Jobcentre Plus and libraries.

Rosalind Turner, director of children and young people's services, cut the ribbon to open the building.

Patricia O'Brien, portfolio holder for children, schools and young people's services, said: “This development in Felixstowe is an important part of the council's commitment to children's centres, to supporting children and families across Suffolk and to making services available in the communities that need them.

“Children's centres can now be accessed by any one - you do not have to be in a particular catchment area.

Most Read

“So I hope families from Felixstowe and surrounding areas will use the facilities on offer.

“Most people don't realise that many of the services are free, so it's really important for families with children under five to contact their local children's centre to find out what activities they can access.”

She said children's centres enable the best possible start in life for children from birth to five years old in Suffolk.

They are places where children can play, socialise, learn and be cared for, while giving parents support.

Most children's centres provide childcare, early education, informal health and social support, plus information for further help.

Some offer baby massage, cookery courses, exercise classes, adult education courses, credit unions, DVD hire and much more. Most services are free, but there are some charges such as childcare for working parents.

Oaks Children's Centre was funded by a government grant from the Sure Start Unit through the county council and the Department of Children, Schools and Families.

Give us your views on the new Oaks Children Centre - write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk