New early years centre opens in Milngavie

A new Early Years Centre has opened in Milngavie and is welcoming local children starting out on their pre-school journey.

The new building is one of three new Early Years Centres planned for East Dunbartonshire as part of the council’s commitment to deliver on the Scottish Government’s requirement for additional hours of early learning and childcare.

From August, all three and four-year-olds, as well as eligible two-year-olds in Scotland, will receive 1140 hours of early learning and childcare each year, almost doubling the original allocation of 600 hours.

Oakburn Early Years Centre offers 101 places for 2-5 year-olds and boasts a range of facilities, including fully equipped playrooms with the latest digital technology, an internal courtyard space for indoor and outdoor play, a mezzanine level with access to a chute to the lower floor, and a large garden space.

The council said all aspects of the new build will create a stimulating play experience for children.

This walk-through video lets interested families see what the fabulous new centre has to offer.

The other two new facilities coming on stream over coming weeks are: Lairdsland Early Years Centre. Built on land adjacent to Southbank Road in Kirkintilloch, it will offer 95 places and be associated with Lairdsland Primary School.

Bearsden Early Years Centre. Built on the site of the former Brookwood Library in Drymen Road, Bearsden, it will offer 95 places and be associated with Bearsden Primary School.

Joint leader of the council, Vaughan Moody said: “It is fantastic, after such a difficult year for everyone, to see this centre open and to know that local families will benefit from all it has to offer.

"It is a wonderful addition to the high quality, flexible, accessible and affordable early years offering already available in East Dunbartonshire.

"Centre staff have been working diligently behind the scenes to get everything ready and I am sure that the children will love their bright and colourful new surroundings and that families will be impressed by the range of play and learning opportunities.”

The Centres are being delivered through Hub West Scotland

Councillor Moody added: "It shows the Council’s strength of commitment that we have delivered this project for the people of Milngavie despite the many challenges faced.”

The Centres are being delivered for the Council through its delivery partner Hub West Scotland.

Joint Leader of East Dunbartonshire Council, Andrew Polson, added: “As with so many other things, the pandemic got in the way of this and our other Centres opening but I am delighted that we have been able to make it happen.

"Our build partners have worked as often and as quickly as possible with Council officers whenever public health guidance allowed and I am grateful to them for their hard work and determination.

"The importance of early learning and childcare to really young children is well documented so this excellent new facility will be a welcome boost for local families.”

The Centres are being delivered for the Council through its delivery partner Hub West Scotland.

The architects are Holmes Miller and Robertson Construction is the main contractor.

Chief executive officer of Hub West Scotland, Iain Marley, said: “We are thrilled that this high-quality learning environment is now available for the delivery of the 1140 hours nursery provision commitment. Oakburn forms part of an investment that has created a portfolio of four outstanding early learning and childcare facilities.

"These assets provide high quality learning environments that will help build skills and confidence, and play a key role in children’s future development.

"Covid-19 has made this and other projects in construction particularly challenging so we are immensely proud of how well the combined East Dunbartonshire Council and hub team and our supply chain partners have worked together and deliver such a fantastic new facility.”

Managing director of Robertson Construction Central West, Stewart Preston, said: “East Dunbartonshire Council have embraced innovative designs for the provision of early years

education, and we are proud to have been the construction partner of choice through Hub West Scotland. The last 14 months have been challenging for our industry but positive collaboration throughout has ensured that Oakburn Early Years is ready to welcome children commencing their pre-school journey.”

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