Funding shortage means a last bell for playgroup

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IT WAS a sad day for staff at Hainton Playgroup as they packed up their toys after 28-years looking after children in the village.

Hainton Playgroup at The Old School was forced to close after a lack of children meant they could not afford running costs.

Despite launching an urgent appeal to get help from the community and local businesses the playgroup did not have enough funds to stay open.

Playgroup worker Maria Davidson blames the playgroup’s problems on the closure of nearby Ludford Primary School in 2009.

She said: “I feel frustrated and very sad to close after so many years. We tried everything we could think of to get some funding or sponsorship but it didn’t work. We even tried extending our capacity to deal with children from birth.

“Eventually, we were left with no choice but to close. If we don’t have the children there’s just no way we can stay open.

“We used to feed into Ludford school so when the school closed a lot of children seemed to stop coming to our playgroup.”

About seven children were due to start Hainton Playgroup this year but have had to be turned down.

Despite really struggling since September 2010 Maria said she managed to keep the playgroup open for last year’s children who were due to start school this year.

Maria said: “Now that we’ve closed some parents are taking their children to Middle Rasen and others have said they aren’t going to bother with playgroup at all.”

Staff held a BBQ to mark the closure of the playgroup.

Everything will be sold off on September 16 and 17 from 11am to 3pm at Hainton Playgroup, The Old School, School Lane.

For more information call Maria on 07850 016543.