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Shock Eviction by Hillcroft College

‘Tinies’ a popular nursery employing 8 staff and looking after 21 children, based in the grounds of Hillcroft College has been forced to close due to an eviction notice served by Hillcroft College.

Tinies started working with Hillcroft 5 years ago when the college requested Tinies step in and take over the crèche facilities for the college caring for the student’s children.
They ran a crèche and cared for children at a summer camp as well as ad hoc childcare when required.
Hillcroft then decided 4 years ago that they needed to attract income from local families so decided to make Powell house a purpose built Nursery setting to cater for 21 children. The refurbishment finished in the summer of 2012 and Tinies grew and nurtured the nursery to full capacity with a waiting list in a very short period of time.

Tinies were operating under a licence with Hillcroft College and towards the end of 2014 Hillcroft began negotiations with Tinies to set up a full lease agreement which was in the final stages of signing to offload the cost of the nursery on Hillcroft and bring much needed revenue to the college.
Hillcroft then did a u-turn on this decision to grant this lease in March and decided to evict ‘Tinies’ with strong letters from their solicitors initially giving them only 6 weeks’ notice. Following several discussions they have extended this to just over 4 months’ notice with Tinies now having to vacate by the 31st July.
Tinies have not been able to find suitable premises to move to in the area so have had to make the decision to close the nursery. Tinies have had strong growth over the past 5 years and prior to this eviction was a profitable healthy business which appeared to have a bright future.

The parents were informed by telephone on the 28th May that they would need to find alternative childcare by the 3st July and the members of staff have been informed that they will be made redundant.

Hilllcroft College has said their decision has been based on their funding and that they need one of the rooms currently used by Tinies as extra classroom space due to the government funding. They have rejected all Tines ideas to assist to provide childcare on site in other ways and have cited any possible extension over the month of August will be very inconvenient to the college.

This closure is leading to huge upset and upheaval for all the Tinies staff, children and families involved with parents struggling to find nursery places with the homely , caring and nurturing environment Tinies currently operate.

The parents have stated the care their children receive from the Tinies staff at Hillcroft nursery was excellent and are devastated with this news.

Here is a quote from a parent: "Not only are we as parents devastated that a high quality nursery and team of staff who provide amazing care for our children in an area where nursery places are limited is to close, we are also furious at the high handed and mean spirited way in which Hillcroft college has acted. The principal undertook to find a solution when she met with the parents, and nothing has been done. They have given no thought or care to the impact on the children who are being displaced at short notice."

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