Welcome to The Nursery at St. Margaret’s, our pre-school for children aged from 2-5.

Situated in seven acres of delightful listed parkland on the Suffolk/Essex border, our setting offers superb, child-friendly care and learning in Gosfield, North Essex, near the market towns of Halstead, Braintree and Sudbury, Suffolk.

We understand that the day your child joins a nursery is a huge milestone for you both. But we’re here to hold your hand – and theirs!

Our Nursery is open term time only (following the same terms as the school) and our core hours are 8.30am – 3.30pm, with wrap around care available from 8.00am and until 5.20pm.

Our early years teaching is about creating a firm foundation for your child’s development. Small classes mean our specialist staff can focus on your child and work at a pace that suits their ability, recognising their strengths in a warm, attentive and approachable way.

Your child’s health, well-being and safety is of prime importance to us, and we never lose sight of the fact that children learn through a combination of teaching, playing, sharing and caring.

The nursery children have French, Music and PE with the same specialist staff as the rest of the school, making the most of the school grounds, music and sport facilities to extend their learning.


The perfect environment for the under 5’s

  • Exceptional outdoor play opportunities with access to our seven acres of listed parkland, secure play areas specifically for our Early Years children and adventure playground
  • Caring, experienced and qualified staff with high staff/child ratios
  • Especially designed child friendly environment which creates a warm, safe and cosy ‘home from home’
  • A strong partnership with parents ensuring that every child is nurtured and developed according to their individual needs
  • Outstanding ISI inspection
  • An environment which encourages independence and initiative
  • Specialist teachers providing Music, PE and French alongside teaching across the early years curriculum
  • Home-made healthy meals prepared daily in our own 5* rated kitchens
  • An active part in whole school activities such as assemblies, Sports Day and productions

Quite simply, our children learn while having fun!

We’d be delighted to help you in any way so please send us an email, give us a call or, better still, pay us a visit and experience for yourself the special feel of The Nursery at St. Margaret’s. Contact us on 01787 472134.

More about St Margaret’s Pre-School

It is anticipated that all children who join The Nursery at St. Margaret’s will join the main school in due course, and they will therefore not have to apply again for a place in Reception.

Our highly skilled Nursery staff are trained to recognise and extend children’s strengths and our adult to child ratio enables them to respond sensitively and appropriately to the needs of individual children. They are continually observed and assessed by a member of staff who is their Key Worker.

We believe that children learn through play and we provide many opportunities for free-choice play using inspirational educational materials, including Montessori equipment. Our activities are planned to provide for, and facilitate, the seven areas of learning and development – communication and language; physical development; personal, social and emotional development; literacy; mathematics; understanding the world and expressive arts and design.

Each day is structured in such a way that the teaching of phonics, number, art and a form of physical activity, is provided. In addition, throughout the week, we have a cooking lesson, visit the Library, engage in ‘exploring and learning’ activities and follow topics which include visits from members of our local community. There is also French, Music and PE tuition with the same specialist teachers as the rest of the school.

Integration with the rest of the school is important as it helps develop social skills and enables a smooth transition into the Pre-Prep Department. This integration includes participation in whole-school assemblies, mixed play times, joint lunchtimes with the Pre-Prep (a nutritionally-balanced cooked meal prepared on-site by our own catering staff), involvement in the whole-school production, during Speech Day, at the end of the year and a very active part in Sports Day!

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Ofsted Inspection Report

June 2014

Children benefit from a highly stimulating, well-planned and consistently dynamic approach to teaching and learning, delivered by experienced and dedicated staff.

A very firm and well-established ethos underpins the early years provision, so every child’s unique needs are met with consistently high quality of teaching and meticulous monitoring.

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ISI Inspection Report


The quality of the provision is outstanding for all children.

St Margaret's Preparatory School