Glasgow & West Scotland

Parents' anger at Glasgow nursery closed without notice

Legacy Hub Image copyright Google
Image caption The Legacy Hub was a flagship project in the regeneration of Glasgow's east end ahead of the 2014 Commonwealth Games

Parents in the east end of Glasgow are angry after their children's nursery was closed without notice.

They were told at 17:00 on Friday that the childcare facility in Dalmarnock's Legacy Hub would not be re-opening.

The hub, a flagship project of the 2014 Commonwealth Games regeneration programme, went into administration earlier that day.

Staff have been made redundant and parents face finding spaces at alternative childcare providers.

The Family Legacy Centre was part of a £40m lottery-funded complex which included a theatre studio space, a cafe, GP surgery, pharmacy and dentist.

It was designed to accommodate up to 51 pre-school children.

Short notice

It was owned by The People's Development Trust but it emerged on Friday that it had fallen into financial difficulties and was unable to continue operating.

On Thursday, parents with children at the nursery were given 24 hours notice of meeting at the centre at the close of business on Friday.

There, a representative of accountants KPMG informed them that as of that moment, the nursery was no longer operating.

One parent, Jamie Walker, told the BBC: "No one knew what it was for and quite a few parents couldn't make it at such short notice.

"We were told the nursery was no longer in operation and had closed for the last time at 17:00.

"A representative from the council said they would ensure children got their statutory nursery hours at other places and gave us a print-out of other nurseries' phone numbers for us to organise ourselves."

Image caption Harrison and his father, Jamie Walker. Harrison will have to start a new nursery.

Mr Walker said the parents were told there was no local provision for under twos in the area. He said he had to inform other parents of the news, who had been unable to attend the meeting.

He also said his four-year-old son Harrison was distraught.

"He is heartbroken. He was not able to say goodbye to his teachers. He is six months away from finishing up to start school and now he has to adapt to a new nursery and new friends."

Mr Walker said that nursery fees for the Legacy Hub were paid a month in advance and that the payment had been taken on Thursday for the coming month.

Parents received official letters on Saturday informing them of the situation.

Image caption The Letter from administrators KPMG arrived on Saturday

Administrators KPMG said 23 of the centre's 25 employees had been made redundant, with two remaining to assist administrators.

The GP surgery, pharmacy, dentist, would continue to operate with all other services, including the nursery, café, room hire, and training and adult education activities ceasing.

Blair Nimmo, joint administrator said: "Unfortunately, The People's Development Trust was unable to continue trading in light of significant liabilities and cash flow difficulties.

"This has, in turn, resulted in the redundancies which have been announced and the closure of a number of services provided by the Legacy Hub.

"We will be working with all affected employees, the parents of the nursery children, Glasgow City Council and the relevant government agencies, including the PACE team at Skills Development Scotland, to ensure a full range of support is available. We will also work with key stakeholders, particularly the local community, to determine the future of the Legacy Hub."

'Significant concern'

A spokesman for Glasgow City Council said: "We understand that the closure of the nursery is a significant concern to the families that use it - and we are offering support to identify suitable alternative provision."

A spokeswoman on behalf of all the funders said: "The Dalmarnock Legacy Hub has been a key element in the regeneration of the community and, over the past three years, has established itself as a community-owned, run and managed asset where a wide range of services are on offer to local people.

"Funders had been working closely in recent months with the People's Development Trust to explore ways to ensure a continued viability for the Legacy Hub - and everyone remains determined to obtain an outcome which is in the best interests of the community and the users of the services."

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