Nursery probe ends after security boost

Squirrels nursery in Bispham
Squirrels nursery in Bispham
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Education watchdog Ofsted has ended its investigation into a nursery that allowed a toddler to escape.

A probe was launched at Squirrels Day Care Centre in Toronto Avenue, Bispham, after a two-year-old boy wandered 200m on his own towards a busy main road earlier this month.

This shows just how easy it can be for a lapse in concentration to cause problems

A horrified driver who found the youngster told officers she almost mowed him down during rush hour traffic, police said.

She got out of her car, took the boy to a nearby shop and called police – 35 minutes before the nursery called police themselves because they thought he was ‘hiding’ inside the nursery.

A spokeswoman for Ofsted said: “We have completed our investigation. The nursery has put in a range of additional safety measures across the premises to ensure that such an incident does not reoccur.

“We have also served the nursery with a number of actions in relation to improving their security and will continue to monitor.”

Management apologised for the ‘one-off’ incident and implemented a raft of extra safety measures, including added safety gates, the installation of CCTV and audible alarms that sound whenever an external door is opened.

A trainee member of staff was ‘no longer working’ at the nursery, manager Becky Hodgkinson said.

Ofsted’s announcement came after Blackpool North and Cleveleys MP Paul Maynard said the incident was ‘concerning’ but proved a good reason for motorists to keep their speed down.

He said: “This shows just how easy it can be for a lapse in concentration to cause problems.”

Management at Squirrels declined to comment on the Ofsted investigation.