Welcome to our nursery!
Shiplake Village Nursery welcomes you to a safe, happy and stimulating pre-school environment, in which children can learn through play and positively develop their social, emotional, physical and intellectual capabilities. Each child is valued and respected as an individual and we believe every child must have the opportunity to reach their full potential.

The nursery was established in 1966 and has occupied its current premises since 1990. Conveniently situated next to Shiplake Memorial Hall, it is surrounded by beautiful open countryside. There is ample parking making it easy for drop off and collection.

We have use of a well maintained garden, which has willow structures and raised beds for planting and playing in. The Nursery room provides a light, spacious and attractive environment for the children inside, and it is planned to maximise the children’s learning experiences. We have a maximum of twenty children in any session. The Nursery employs a Manager, Deputy Manager, Registrar and team of Nursery Assistant/Teaching Assistants who all hold current DBS checks and meet EYFS regulations and child to adult ratios. Our staff continue their professional development through regular supervision sessions which lead to focused training. We will occasionally be supported by Teaching Assistants from Shiplake Primary School and Agency staff. All supporting staff will have completed Safeguarding training and be fully DBS checked. Parents are informed if there are any changes to the usual Nursery staff caring for the children. We work to the following ratios: For children aged 2years, at least one member of staff for every four children (at least one member of staff holds a full and relevant level 3 childcare qualification, at least half of all other staff hold a full and relevant level 2 qualification) For children aged 3yrs and over, at least one member of staff for every eight children (at least one member of staff holds a full and relevant level 3 childcare qualification, at least half of all other staff hold a full and relevant level 2 childcare qualification)

Our Staff

Holly Ackroyd

Acting Manager

Holly has experience both in a nursery and as a nanny, she is also a mother to twin 4 year old boys. Holly holds a Foundation Degree in Early Years and a Level 3 Diploma. Holly has completed training in Generalist safeguarding, Designated Safeguarding Lead, Paediatric First Aid, Food Safety Level 2, FGM V3, Prevent Duty and Special Educational Needs

Mel Villa

Deputy Manager

Mel joined in September 2019 and was appointed Deputy Manager in February 2020. She was previously a long standing Teaching Assistant at Shiplake School. Mel has an NVQ level 3 in Early Years Care and Education and has completed training in Prevent Duty, Paediatric First Aid, Safeguarding and Children’s Play.

Jessica Assem

Nursery Assistant (QTS)

Jessica joined us in February 2020 after moving here from the USA where she was a Qualified Teacher. Jessica is now working towards attaining her UK equivalent QTS qualification. Jessica has experience working in pre-schools and International schools around the world and is also a certified Ashtanga yoga teacher.

Jessica Turner

Nursery Assistant

Jessica joined Shiplake Nursery in February 2017. Jessica has three school aged children who all attended the nursery. Jessica has the relevant training in: Safeguarding, FGM, Child Protection, Food Safety Level 2, Prevent Duty and Paediatric 1st aid

Karen Hawkes


Karen joined in 2016 as a committee member and was appointed Registrar in March 2017. Karen has three school aged children who attended the Nursery. Karen has completed training in Generalist Safeguarding.

  • Ofsted, 2016
    Staff use effective methods, such as skilful questions, to help children think, solve problems, and develop good communication and language skills
    Ofsted, 2016
  • Ofsted, 2016
    Staff provide children with lots of praise and encouragement that help raise children's self-esteem and support their emotional well-being effectively
    Ofsted, 2016
  • Parent
    My son always tells me about the fun activities he's done while here, whether it's baking, digging in the nursery garden, hunting for bugs, or visiting the 'big school' once a week.

Preparing for school
Shiplake Village Nursery is managed by the governing body of Shiplake CofE Primary School. During the Wednesday morning session, the children go with the Nursery staff to Shiplake Primary School, which aids their transition to school when the time arrives. Here, they enjoy meeting the reception year teacher, taking part in activities within the classroom and school hall, and seeing some of the older children to gain a better understanding of the 'big school' experience.

The main focus is on familiarity. Closer to the time, at Nursery, the children will role play with the school uniforms and talk about how they feel about going to school. They will formally meet the reception teacher who will be taking them in September.