BOSSES at a village nursery school are hoping to build a larger and more accessible building for staff and pupils after being awarded council funding.

Castle Nursery, in Castle Hedingham, is a privately-owned childcare facility based in the grounds of DeVere Primary School and was recently granted vital funding by Essex County Council.

Diana Dadd and Marelize Wright, who run the daycare service which has about 40 children on its books and is rated ‘outstanding’, first put in an application back in November 2017.

They hoped to secure enough money to replace their current, run-down building with a modern one.

An increased number of homes in the local community has also resulted in greater demand for nursery spaces, something which Castle Nursery is unable to supply unless its current building is replaced.

Diana said: ‘‘The existing building still functions but is now very old. We think it was installed on the site in around 1997 and so the only way we would be able to offer additional spaces and services would be to replace the existing building, as it would not withstand any alterations or extensions to it.

“It has, however, provided many years of service to local families.”

The prestigious pre-school only received confirmation that its application had been approved earlier this year but has already sought planning permission from Braintree Council to demolish the current building and start work on the more up-to-date facility.

The proposed build will do away with the old nursery’s dated layout in favour of a refurbished and modular building, giving the nursery greater provision, as well as more room to stage activities.

Unlike the current building, the new nursery will have full disabled access, so it is more accommodating to the wide range of children they look after.

Marelize said: ‘‘The nursery has always been fully inclusive, however we have never had a specific disabled access due to the steep slope the nursery is positioned on.

“The provision of a lift will benefit children and parents alike and anyone else who requires assisted access to our services.’’