Taking childminding to a barn
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  1. #1
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    Default Taking childminding to a barn

    Hi
    I was talking to one of my friends the other day and was saying about how I was getting really busy and come September if I said yes to all of the parents that want to use me then I would need to take on another assistant (already work with one) and they joked I needed a bigger place and set up a nursery. We spoke further about it and they mentioned a barn in their farm that's empty and how it would be perfect. They would convert it to how I need it to be etc for a small monthly rental.

    It's perfect location, parents will love it being on the farm, and I know there is def childcare need in my area.

    But how would Ofsted feel about it? Can anyone point me in the right direction as to what I need to do to see if this idea is possible please? And what are the requirements needed

    TIA x

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    I do see the attraction- and your reputation as a childminder may well help in the short term to attract clients. The idea of a space designed exactly for my needs , which doesn't have to double as my home , sounds so good.
    It wouldn't be childminding though - and I think that what the majority of parents seek in a childminder is a home setting .
    My oh has often joked that I should set up a nursery , mainly when I'm turning away enquiries . I tell him that if parents wanted a nursery then the one down the street would be full and not me!

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    It sounds like a fab idea. I would contact the local planning office too. There may well be agricultural restrictions on the buildings and you may need permission for change of use. Also worth considering heating costs etc.. You'd also have to think the long term- what happens if they want to sell the farm? Looking forward to finding out how your enquiries go.

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    Although as mama2three says it wouldn't be childminding unless barn was converted to domestic premises.

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    I completely understand what your saying- in my area we are desperate for childminders and nurseries. Parents always go to the nurseries first in this area (unless I have been recommended) but they are all full so then seek alternative which is me. Most parents I find want the things nursery offer etc.

    I don't want to be a nursery - I just want to take my business to the barn - so won't get too much bigger than I already am will just have more space for kids to run around etc.

    I'm aware I won't be classes as childminding any more but so looking for where to look to get info on what I will be called and the rules and regulations that will differ

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    Lal- I didn't think about the agricultural restrictions- thank you for that I will look into that

    Do you think Ofsted will help me with how I would go about changing the barn to a domestic premise? X

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by oxfordshirecm View Post
    Lal- I didn't think about the agricultural restrictions- thank you for that I will look into that

    Do you think Ofsted will help me with how I would go about changing the barn to a domestic premise? X
    No ofsted wont get involved you would have to get in touch with your local planning office. Which in the first place will cost you money. I think its £400 just to make the inquiry.

    It will be classed as childcare on non domestic premises which should come up in a search.
    When someone tells you nothing is impossible, tell them to go slam a revolving door

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    I thought changes were being made regarding the restrictions on where a childminder could work? I was under the impression this would be to allow childminders to work in schools etc, to cover afterschool clubs, but wonder if it would apply in a situation like this.

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    One other point too before you go too far - check insurance.

    I used to work in insurance a looooong time ago but I can remember about issues around insurance on a working farm. And also my in laws were farmers and they had chemicals etc.... that has to be locked away and restrictions on who could access areas or live work on the farm because of machinery etc.... This could be an issue as you would need both public and employers liability. And also childcare on a working farm this could be a problem.

    But it sounds a fantastic idea - loads of space, i presume and an authentic/different experience for the children. You could have like a little petting zoo area, I'm getting excited now, I want one. Good luck.

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    Planning departments seem vary in how much they charge for what. Our local planning/ building regulation department have never charged for enquiries ('what permissions might I need for this? Who would be the best person to ask about this?) but charge if you submit plans.

    Mouse- I've no idea about the other places childminders could work, but would be good to find out more if anyone knows.

    Our local farm butchers shop is basically an insulated shed in what was one of the big barns, depending on the barn something like that might be an option- rather than properly converting installing a high spec 'temporary' building with plumbing etc.

    Oh dear- I've watched too many episodes of grand designs! I must go and finish cypop5 and start a uni essay due in next thurs.

  12. #11
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    I walk past an Outstanding Nursery that is run with a Forest school ethos on a farm, I am not sure if you would need to set up as a Nursery or whether the changes in regulations from Sept regarding "Childminding on a non domestic premises" would still allow you to call yourself Childminders. Reading their website it seems that it's a former working farm but I'm sure it still has fields with horses in.

    Here is their website if you want inspiration Welton Free Rangers Forest School Nursery

    or maybe you could contact them for advice.

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    This is what I was thinking of:

    https://www.gov.uk/government/upload...onse_final.pdf

    Question 4b covers childminders being able to work at 'suitable non-domestic premises' for part of the working week. As usual it's a bit vague and doesn't say how much of the working week you'd be able to work away from your home.

    If you were planning to work solely from the barn I guess you would have to register as childcare on non-domestic premises.

 

 

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