Old hospital hub southwold 48 2x

in Nature

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Child-led childcare in a loving, safe and stimulating environment. Designed by three generations of working women, Old Hospital Nursery provides care-free childcare for children and parents.

We will be using the Curiosity Approach. This means that your little ones will learn at their own pace by exploring the world around them, using every-day objects, and the best possible playground, the beautiful natural environment of the Suffolk Heritage Coast. Old Hospital Nursery has its own outdoor play area. It is a short walk to Southwold beach and across the street from Tibby’s Green playground. Next door is Southwold Library, Southwold Works co-working, and The Canteen, a farm to fork cafe where your children’s meals will be prepared.

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The Curiosity Approach adapts to modern day society the insights of the great pioneers of progressive early childhood education — Maria Montessori, Rudolf Steiner, Magda Gerber, among others. Our child care philosophy is based on six principals.

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Every child is different.

We work with (and never against!) our children’s grain, helping them to develop confidence, a sense of self worth and independence.

Stress-free Learning.

Our children learn through all forms of play in an unpressurised environment where children self-teach through guided exploration. This lays the foundation for the life- long skill of problem solving thinking.

Educating the heart.

We educate your children’s hearts by nurturing them in a place that is an extension of home, not a watered down version of school. With us, they absorb the values of sharing, respect, kindness and empathy.

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Treasuring our Natural Environment.

We encourage in our little ones a sense of awe and wonder at the natural world. Our children spend lots of outdoor time in all kinds of weather — gardening, caring for animals, looking, thinking, asking questions, finding answers.

A safe, calm and tranquil place.

Modern life is full of auditory and visual stimulation, which can be harmful to the rapidly growing brains of our children. We counter the stress this creates by providing a setting that is calm, tranquil, predictable, and familiar.

Beauty and Authenticity.

Young children are drawn to beauty and authenticity. Our setting is a bright and beautiful space, full of light, where children will use real household objects to stimulate their imaginations.

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Aims and Values

Our aim is to provide individualised care in a homely, nurturing, secure and stimulating environment where the individuality of each child is recognised. We want all of our children to develop at a pace that harmonises with their needs, gaining in self-confidence, learning kindness and empathy, respecting our natural environment, and becoming attuned to the beauty of the world around them. Our dedicated staff value and encourage parental involvement in the life of the nursery.

Our Offer

Our Nursery provides childcare 50 weeks a year from 8am to 6pm for ages 3 months to 4 years. We also offer part-day sessions. We have a special interest in teaching children where their food comes from and introducing them to diverse cuisines. Their meals will be prepared in our farm to fork café, The Canteen, based on seasonal, locally sourced ingredients.

What we offer at Old Hospital Nursery

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Healthy meals from our farm to fork café
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Music and movement
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Nature all around to discover and explore
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A garden for children to grow what they eat
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A safe, nurturing, carefree space
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Chickens to feed, eggs to collect
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Our library, all the books a child could need
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Run-around time on the beach and Common

Meet our staff

Portrait of Elaine

Elaine Glendinning
Nursery Director

Elaine is a retired head teacher for Southtown Primary School in Great Yarmouth and more recently Hempnall Primary School near Bungay. A member of the SouthGen Management Committee, she is also a Trustee for the Waveney Valley Academies Trust and Search Manager for Suffolk Lowland Search and Rescue [sulsar.og.uk], a charity that helps the emergency services find missing children and vulnerable adults. Elaine, who has taught children from diverse backgrounds, is committed to providing individualised care in a secure and kindly environment.

Portrait of Anita

Anita Holland
Nursery Manager

Anita has 20 years experience as a primary school teacher, specialising in the Early Years. She is passionate about the benefits of outdoor learning and strongly believes in giving children the time and space to explore, be curious and to use their wonderful imaginations.

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Our children at play
Sand pictures
Three chldren chasing dog
Studying found objects
Painting with toy soldier
Litte boys collecting eggs
Children walking back to nursery on a winters eve
Children wading through puddles
Little boy peeping through wood poles


Open 50 weeks/year 8.30am to 5.30pm for ages 3 months to 4 years


Full day 8.30 am – 5.30 pm

Half day 8.30 am – 1 pm
or 1 pm – 5.30 pm


6 hour session 9 am – 3 pm


Additional time, charged per hour at



Includes: lunch, snacks and drinks

Holiday Cover

We also provide holiday cover subject to availability at £10 per hour

Funded Sessions

We provide government funded sessions for children of 3-4 years up to 30 hours per week. Government funding is intended to cover the delivery of early education and care only. We charge for meals and additional hours.

We are also registered for working tax credit for childcare.

For more information or to register your interest


Our nursery policies are available upon request.

New customer enquiry form here


Weekly events to promote your well-being and help your business grow.

No upcoming events.

Contact Old Hospital Nursery