Nicole and Lorraine Take Childcare Above and Beyond in Perthshire
In this week’s business feature, we look at a Tayside business that has overcome a number of hurdles in seeing their business dreams finally realised.
ABC Nursery, Above and Beyond Childcare was founded by Nicole Wilson and Lorraine Reed in Aberfeldy, Perthshire. They provide quality after school and day care servicess for children aged 6 weeks to 8 years as well as part-time, full-time and even ad-hoc care. Nicole and Lorraine also offer care during in-service days and school holidays.
Opening its doors on the 6th of January 2014 following 6 months of development, Nicole and Lorraine’s venture is the result of a well-spotted opening in the local market. With the nearest nursery being over 30 miles away, ABC Nursery, Above and Beyond Childcare provides a much needed and convenient service to the local area.
For Nicole and Lorraine, childcare has always been their field of expertise, with Nicole noting:
“We both enjoy working with children and have worked in this field for the local authority. Lorraine is an Early Childhood Practitioner and has worked at the local nursery school for over 10 years. I am a Primary teacher and have worked at the nursery at the local school for 3 years.”
The journey to owning their own business hasn’t always been a smooth ride for Nicole and Lorraine. There were a number of obstacles for them to overcome on the route to realising their ambitions:
“The lack of funding and grants was a huge issue, but thankfully we secured a business loan to help cover the set up costs. Finding suitable premises in a limited area was also challenging but we are happy with the premises we managed to secure.”
Nicole also recalls how she and Lorraine also had to contend with a few unexpected hurdles:
“We encountered delays and restrictions imposed by the Care Inspectorate, because we were not informed of essential additional information that was required to become registered. There was also unexpected and unbudgeted building work required to change the building layout to ensure it worked best for us and had the necessary requirements.”
Nicole, however is grateful for the support Business Gateway provided throughout their journey to launch their own business:
“We had great support in completing our business plan, as well as discussions to inform us about what our next steps might be and what aspects we need to consider e.g. health and safety, staffing, research. The workshop lorraine attended about business planning gave us valuable information, helping us write ours.”
“However, I think one of the most beneficial things we have received from Business Gateway is the motivation to continue by having someone check on your progress, and support us along the way.”
Obstacles faced by Nicole and Lorraine have also sometimes taken a more interesting turn:
“One day, our electrician accidentally put his foot right through the ceiling while stranded in the loft! We also lost our van in the massive car park of a major furniture retailer after spending a whopping 6 hours browsing and buying essentials. Luckily in both of these instances, things were ok in the end and we saw the funny side!”
ABC Nursery, Above and Beyond Childcare
The Bungalow, Dunkeld Road, Aberfeldy, PH15 2AQ
There are still a number of areas experiencing gaps in childminding and childcare services in the North East. These areas include Westhill, Portlethen and Inverbervie in Grampian, while there are many areas of rural Pershire lacking either private nurseries or childminding provision. There may also be future requirements for areas such as Ellon and Kintore, due to ongoing development. If you would like to work in childcare and be your own boss we can help, just get in touch to find out more.
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