We produce a newsletter several times a year to give families an insight into what has been happening across the nursery, to give reminders and dates for forthcoming events. We also send regular emails, and display notices around the nursery. Families are currently dropping off and collecting from the door, owing to COVID, so we have increased the amount of photos shared with families.

Information about some of the main events in recent years is listed below. Although COVID has restricted the events we can hold, we hope to be able to return to offering them again soon. Please check the newsletters for further details.


2022 Events:

We plan to hold our usual annual Easter Egg Hunt (April 3rd) and Party in the Woods, COVID permitting!


2021 Events:

We are pleased to have featured in Nursery World again, in an article about physical development in Early Years.

We have a visit from the police car- which the children were very excited by!

Daisy the lamb visited nursery and Forest School- the pre-school children loved bottle feeding her!

Our staff have accessed a range of online training to make up for the lack of face to face training available because of COVID. Subjects include Maths in Early Years, Awe and Wonder, and Risk and Challenge.

A photographer came to take the children's nursery photos in our outdoor spaces in the autumn term.

Santa and his elf paid a few visits towards the end of the autumn term!


2020 Events:

We remained open for key worker children throughout the lockdown, and re-opened to all on June the 1st, once government guidance permitted. Huge thanks to our dedicated staff who worked so hard to make this possible- and huge thanks to all of the families at the nursery, who were so supportive during this time!

We had planned our usual Easter Egg Hunt and Party in the Woods for families, along with open evenings and a school leavers' celebration, but most of these have been scuppered by coronavirus! We are hoping that government restrictions will allow us to hold some sort of event for the 2020 school leavers, and that we will be able to have a Christmas event, although it may look rather different to normal!

Our focus on gardening has continued and we hope to complete the RHS school gardening awards. We are making the most of our new raised vegetable garden beds, and even growing vegetables in our window boxes! We also plan to move forward with the Eco-Nursery Award.

We also have lots of Forest School and Outdoor Learning courses and events planned, which are open to teachers, early years practitioners, and other who are interested; click here for details.

We have featured in Nursery World magazine again, with a photo from our Forest School on the cover of their August edition!


2019 Events:

The nursery and members of our staff team were finalists and winners in the Nursery World Awards again! We are proud to announce our practice has been recognised in the following sections:

Elaine outstanding contributionOutstanding Contribution: Elaine - winner

Practitioner of the Year: Kelly - finalist

Early Years Teacher of the Year: Hannah - winner

Enabling Environments (for our Forest School environment) - winner

Huge congratulation to all of the staff for the work involved in winning these awards!


Dance coaching LRS actie settingLeicestershire and Rutland Sport visited us to take photographs and film, in order to use our practice as a case study for outstanding practice in supporting physical development in the Early Years.

We appeared on ITV News as part of their Winter Wellbeing series- they filmed at our Forest School, and one of our dance coaching sessions!

We are very excited to have appeared on BBC Radio Leicester's Breakfast Show to talk about what we do!

Our Easter Egg Hunt was a great success; we had plenty of fun and raised lots of money for charity!

We are proud to announce that we have achieved the Gold Level of the Green Tree Schools Award (The Woodland Trust).

We have just achieved Level 4 of the Royal Horticultural Society School Gardening Awards, and are working towards the final level, number 5!

Children have enjoyed visits to Cattows Pick Your Own Farm to harvest various soft fruits. Our chef turned some of the strawberries into jam for the leavers' event, where we said farewell to this year's school leavers.

alpacasWe've welcomed our new alpacas and enjoyed visiting them to say hello and feed them. We hope to use their fleece for projects in future!


2018 Events:

We were finalists in the "Nursery Food" section of the Nursery World Awards 2018.

Our Forest School trainer, Kate, won the "Trainer of the Year" Award at the Nursery World Awards 2018. Click here for information on the training.

We became the first nursery school in the UK to be awarded the top Forest School Quality Mark. We held an unveiling event which was attended by parents, a representative from the Local Authority, the National Forest Company, the Forestry Commision, and various local schools. We are very proud of our plaques! This event was covered in local magazines and newspapers.

As part of our focus on physical development (which is key for brain development) we have developed the challenges on our top field. We have added a new trim trail, carefully designed to challenge the children, in addition to the climbing wall and log tangle.

We have expanded our on site Forest School area, increasing the area by 50%, and have lots of plans for it!

Unfortunately our Easter Egg Hunt had to be cancelled because of a huge amount of snow the night before! As this is usually our fundraiser for Rainbow's Children's hospice, we invited donations for campfire cooked food at the Party in the Woods instead, and sent this to Rainbows.

The children in the Holiday Club won a great range of prizes in the local Horticultural Society photographic competition, even winning in the adult sections.

Children had a fabulous time visiting the largest pumpkin patch in the UK, at Cattows Farm, to pick their own pumpkins as part of our autumn celebrations! We alos visited Cattows earlier in the year to pick soft fruit and visit their play area and farm animals.

We held all our usual events for parents including open evenings, the Party in the Woods, the Leavers' Event (where the children demonstrated their dance moves, learnt during their weekly dance sessions with Miss Adele) and the Christmas performance.

Children enjoyed regular sessions with specialist coaches who visit us for football, Multisports, dance and yoga.


2017 Events:

We were awarded "Most Active Early Years Setting" by Leicestershire and Rutland Sport.

Janet, the founder of the nursery, received the "Outstanding Contribution" award at the Nursery World Awards 2017.

We were invited to send information and pieces of work to Buckingham Palace for the Queen and Prince Philip to view as part of the Commonwealth Canopy celebrations.

We held a wide range of events for parents, including open evenings, an Easter Egg Hunt, the annual Party in the Woods, a school leavers' event and a Christmas performance.

Holiday Club children learnt about photogrpahy, took lots of photographs, and entered some of them in the local Horticultural Society photography competition, winning and being placed in various sections.

We celebrated Black History Month with a visit from a company called African Ark. The children learnt about African culture, music and art.

Holly the Shetland pony came to join the donkeys in our field.


2016 Events:

This year it was our 30th anniversary and we had an extra special anniversary Party in the Woods event!

We ran a range of workshops for parents, including one based on letters and sounds.

We were involved in the Play Champions project organised by Forest Way Teaching School Alliance.

We held several charity events, including an Easter Egg Hunt (proceeds to Rainbows Childrens' Hospice) and various charity dressing up days plus the Barnado's Big Toddle.

We moved one of the pre-school groups into the Barn, and moved the babies into the Log Cabin, refurbishing both rooms.


2015 Events:

Hettie and Bullseye, our foster donkeys from the Donkey Sanctuary, joined us in the autumn!

Holmsdale Manor became the only setting in Leicestershire to have a Level 4 forest school practitioner, and started offering forest school training!

We enjoyed another fabulous Party in the Woods event.

We celebrated another 'outstanding' Ofsted result!

We raised money for several local charities and supported parents' fundraising as well.

Our sessional pre-school moved from the Upper Brambles into our fabulous log cabin, which is right next to our on-site forest school!


2014 Events:

We held our usual events, including:

Two open evenings for parents.

An Easter Egg Hunt which raised money for ainbow's Children's Hospice.

Our annual Party in the Woods.

Lots of trips, including visiting the local Scarecrow festival, the local strawberry picking farm and to the local Farm Park to see the animals, explore the adventure playground and use the soft play!

A Leavers' event in August for children moving to school.

Various Christmas events.

Workshops for parents, based on a range of topics such as REAL: Raising Early Achievement in Literacy.


2013 Events:

We have just had our new traversing climbing wall installed on the top field! This will offer lots of challenge to the older children as they try to cross along the wall, while being safe as they are not far at all from the ground! We are also having a new climbing structure, a 'log tangle'!

Our tennis court has just been resurfaced with astroturf, which will make it more suitable for a wider range of activities including football coaching.

We had a Christmas singing, dancing and nativity event for parents to come and see their children perform! The children performed fantastically, even remembering the signs they had learnt to accompany the songs they sang!

We also enjoyed a visit from Father Christmas, who brought all the children a present!

We welcomed parents to our open evening in November, to talk with their child's key person, look through their child's learning journey and look around the nursery rooms.

We held another successful event in the woods during Summer 2013- a 'Picnic in the Woods'! As well as enjoying picnics and various arts and crafts, from woodwork to clay sculpting, the 'Gruffalo trail' was very popular! Even though people brought picnics, most still found room to squeeze in some 'forest school pizza', cooked on the camp fire.

Our Easter Egg Hunt was successful, raising £240 for Rainbows Children's Hospice, despite snow and sleet forcing us to relocate some of the stalls under cover! Thank you to those who braved the weather and attended

Our fundraising for Red Nose Day- wearing something red and coming to nursery with funny hair- raised £88.

We held a very successful leavers' event in September,which was a lovely send off for all of the pre-school children who have moved on to various local schools. The children performed their dance routines with Miss adele, which the parents enjoyed!

Parents and staff enjoyed an evening at Ragdale Hall spa to raise money for Rainbows Children's Hospice. The wine, canapes, tour of the spa and Clarins consultation were very enjoyable. One of the parents was lucky enough to win a day at Ragdale!

We took part in the 'Parent Play Pilot' led by the inspirational Ben Kingston-Hughes, who leads many training sessions for Leicestershire County Council. Most of our staff and lots of parents attended the evening sessions and had a fantastic time, including making and setting off bottle rockets!

We have installed two water walls, two mud kitchens and a sand kitchen during the summer. These have proved extremely popular and a photograph of one of the water walls won the 'Star Photo' prize in Nursery World magazine, the second time we have won this prize!

We have also expanded the outdoor area available to the Baby Room, who have been making good use of the extra space!


2012 Events:

Our Christmas Shopping Evening in December 2012 raised £500 for Rainbows Children's Hospice! In January 2012, Emma from Rainbows came to accept the cheque and talk to the pre-school children about the work done by Rainbows.

Our Easter Egg Hunt in 2012 enjoyed fantastic weather, raising lots of money for Rainbows. The children enjoyed searching for eggs, taking part in arts, crafts and games, and looking at our chicks! Later in the year, the pre-school children watched in fascination as all 9 of the duck eggs incubated in their room hatched out in front of them! They then watched the ducklings grow up!

After the success of our 25th anniversary 'Party in the Woods' last year, we decided to hold another event, this time to celebrate our outstanding OFSTED result in December 2011!

The children really enjoyed taking part in 'Artie's Olympics' this year, and had a fabulous time trying out the different races and events.

All of the nursery classrooms joined in the Barnados Big Toddle fundraising this year, which was very successful!


2011 Events:

Holmsdale Manor Nursery Ibstock Cooking marshmallows on the campfireHolmsdale celebrated our 25th anniversary during Summer 2011! We held a fantastic party in the woods which was well attended by past and present pupils, their families, people from local schools and other friends. Attractions included campfire cooking, den building, bug hunts, and owl display, green woodworking, making bat boxes, a hog roast and many other crafts and activities. This was reported in The Graphic, The Coalville Times and Teach Nursery. We also won the 'Star Photo' prize in Nursery World magazine for this photo of children toasting marshmallows on the campfire!

Our leavers' celebration was well attended by children and families who will be leaving us this September to go to school. The pre-school children performed the street dance they have been learning during their weekly sessions with Miss Adele, our dance instructor.

Our Christmas Shopping Evening was held at the Palace on Ibstock High Street. This event raised £300 for charity, and was well attended, with an excellent selection of stalls.

Our pre-school children put on a successful and very well attended carol singing and dancing event for their parents, relatives and friends in December.