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Nurseries

Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 15th October 2012.

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Photo of Owen Smith Owen Smith Shadow Secretary of State for Wales

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many childcare places his Department provides on its estate; what the cost is of providing such places; how many such places his Department provided in 2010; what the cost was of providing such places in 2010; what plans he has for changes in the provision of such childcare places; and what the number of places will be once any such changes have been implemented.

Photo of Alistair Burt Alistair Burt The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

There are two nurseries on the FCO Estate. One is in Hanslope Park, near Milton Keynes, and is operated by FCO Services, the other is in central London and operated by the FCO.

There are 50 places available at the Hanslope Park site and 46 places available at the London site.

The net cost of providing the places at the Hanslope Park nursery in 2010-11 was £35,860 after receipt of fees paid by staff.

The net cost of providing the places at the London nursery in 2010-11 was £74,166 after the receipt of fees paid by staff.

The capacity of the Hanslope Park nursery was increased in 2006 from 25 to 50 places when it moved to new purpose built premises. There are no plans to further increase the capacity.

The capacity of the London Nursery was increased in 2008 from 36 places to 46 places. There are no plans to further increase the capacity.

The nursery helps the FCO and FCO Services recruit and retain staff especially those who might otherwise not return after maternity leave.

For many staff, the availability of high-quality, reliable child care (full or part-time) is one of the most important factors in them being able to return to work and/or choosing to work in a particular location and for a given employer.

FCO and FCO Services recognise this and over the past decade have continuously improved the quantity and quality of child care provided by our nurseries.

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