North Swindon MP Justin Tomlinson welcomed Minister for Children and Families Will Quince MP to Swindon in order to showcase the excellent provision available to children in the town.
Justin and Will, who were until recently colleagues in the DWP, started with a visit to Playsteps Nursery near Farringdon Park – where they met with nursery owner, and borough councillor, Jo Morris. While at Play Steps, the pair also met with some of the children and joined them for some activities including craft and Storytime.
The visit provided an opportunity to thank staff for their hard work throughout the pandemic, and to discuss what more can be done to improve support to nurseries, whilst also balancing the need to make childcare as available and affordable to as many parents as possible.
Following the Playsteps visit, Justin and Will attended an afterschool sport club at Oakhurst Primary School run by Mark Draycott and his Draycott Sports Camp. Justin is a keen supporter of Draycott Sports Camp, having been impressed by its work to encourage children to be more active, and provide fun sports classes throughout the holidays.
The visit to Draycott Sports Camp provided an opportunity to hear more about the successful Holiday Activities & Food Programme, which sees places at school holiday clubs provided to children eligible for Free School Meals - meaning that any child can take part regardless of any financial constraints.
Justin Tomlinson Said: “It was great to visit Playsteps and Draycott Sports Camp and see first-hand the fantastic early years and childcare provision we have in Swindon. I want to thank Jo and Mark for allowing Will and I to visit, listening to your experience and your suggestions was very insightful.”