The key collaborating partner in the Professional Love in Early Years Settings (PLEYS) research project was Fennies Nurseries, a growing chain of 8 independent nurseries providing care and education for babies and children aged 3 months to 5 years in and around London. The project required collaborative co-production with industry particularly, because it is in the private sector that most concerns have been raised around intimacy and child safeguarding.
As a private company, Fennies is aware that parents have a choice about where their children receive their care and education, which is why it is important that parents are well-informed about their children’s experiences. Fennies offers flexibility in their free funded places to ensure that all children can have access to the services they offer. Fennies works closely with social services supporting children and families in need. They demonstrate some exemplary practice, and outstanding nursery facilities. Fennies managers are either degree level or pursuing a degree. Fennies is being recognised nationally as industry award finalists in the Nursery Management Today (NMT) and Nursery World for manager, best newcomer, operations manager and best design/expansion. The values of the company in terms of the needs of children fit well with the values and mission of early childhood research in the School of Education.