No change to Bright Start nursery until September

A change in status of a council-run children's nursery in Brighton and Hove has been ruled out until September.

Parents have been fighting plans to close down the Bright Start nursery pending a consultation into its future.

The Conservative-run city council, which pays nearly £90,000 a year in subsidies, said all avenues would be explored to safeguard the service.

Proposals include turning the nursery into a "community asset" to be run by a consortium of parents or staff.

Plans to improve the sustainability of the nursery are also being considered, which include bringing the fees into line with other council-run nurseries alongside options to improve occupancy rates.

'Thriving nursery'

Councillor Vanessa Brown, cabinet member for children and young people, said: "Our consultation over the future of Bright Start was launched with the aim of ensuring that the council's resources are focused on the city's most vulnerable children with the greatest needs.

"We recognise parental concern over proposals to close the nursery in April so we propose to rule out any change in status until September this year."

Ms Brown urged parents and "other interested parties" to come forward to look at "the potential to ensure the nursery thrives in the long term through being taken on by the community itself".

She added that "a substantial business case" had already been put forward by one parent.

The future of the nursery will be discussed at a cabinet meeting on 17 January.

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