Portsmouth nursery sector sees 'green shoots' of recovery after Covid challenges
FOUR nurseries in Portsmouth closed in the pandemic and two childminders resigned – but there are ‘green shoots’ of recovery.
A Portsmouth City Council report on the availability of early years childcare said a huge drop in private income and furlough rules hit hard.
Nurseries were twice given a £2,700 grant while childminders received £500.
The report said the financial challenges saw four nurseries and two childminders close, with a lack of cash making ‘their decision to close unequivocal’.
One gym-based nursery cannot reopen until September as bookings have dipped.
But it added: ‘On a positive note, two new nurseries have been registered over the past six months, and there have been a few enquiries from people wanting information about starting up as a childminder.’
The report added: ‘We are hopeful that we can continue to support those struggling, with business support, and signposting families to targeted settings to increase their numbers.’
Staff have shown a ‘can-do’ attitude and there are ‘green shoots’ of recovery, the report said.
September bookings are also ‘looking promising’.