Skip to main content

To: Mayor Woodley, Mayor of Hackney

Save Hackney's Children's Centres

Hackney's Children Centres - Council-run nurseries offering subsidised childcare - are under threat, with Hackney Council proposing to close two centres (Fernbank and Sebright) and change the provision at two others (Oldhill and Hillside).

We demand that Mayor Woodley and Hackney Council factor in government reforms that will bring increased funding and demand, delivering the necessary savings required by the council. We also demand that they fully explore other ways to increase income and reduce expenditure.

We call on the Mayor of Hackney, Caroline Woodley, to:
● immediately halt the consultation on the proposed closures of Sebright and Fernbank in August 2025 and proposed changes in provision at Oldhill and Hillside
● commit to safeguarding all subsidised childcare places and Children’s Centre nurseries in Hackney
● ensure that all subsidised childcare places are properly advertised to make sure that families are aware of the services that are available to them

What else can I do to help?
● Hackney Council is running a consultation about the proposed changes: To support us, please complete the consultation, strongly disagreeing with the proposed changes, before it closes on 24th April 2024.
● If you are a Hackney resident, write to your local Councillor, to your MP (either Diane Abbott MP [email protected] or Meg Hillier MP [email protected]), the Mayor of Hackney, Caroline Woodley, [email protected] and Anntoinette Bramble, Cabinet member for Education [email protected] to tell them how you feel about the closures. Got to our website to find templates for letters.
● Donate to our crowdfunding page . We are raising money to cover the legal fees of the solicitors and barrister. They will be investigating and considering all of the decision making and consultation paperwork, advising us on the merits of a challenge, and preparing pre-action correspondence to the local authority.
● Follow us on X (formerly Twitter) @Save_Fernbank, @SaveOurSebright and @SaveHillsideN16 and on Instagram @SaveOurSebright and @Save_Fernbank_Childrens_Centre
● Go to our website to learn more about the campaign and how you can help.

Why is this important?

High-quality, affordable childcare is critical to children’s development, especially the most vulnerable, and 0-3 years is where the biggest impact can be made on outcomes for children. Disadvantaged children benefit significantly from good quality preschool experiences, especially when they are educated with a mixture of children from different social and economic backgrounds - research has shown that this helps close the gap between them and their peers. This is particularly significant in Hackney, where there is a 43% child poverty rate, 10% higher than the London average. These cuts will hurt these children most and disadvantage minority groups.

Closing these Children's Centre nurseries will result in the loss of 200 full-time, all-year, affordable childcare places to Hackney families. This is a 33% cut of subsidised nursery places in Hackney. The closures will disproportionately affect vulnerable children, lower-income families, women, single parents, and people of the Global Majority. Childcare costs are a driver of poverty and access to affordable childcare is essential for the wellbeing of working families.

We want to protect the jobs of dedicated staff, many of whom also live in Hackney. We’re looking at over 40 staff (including support staff) over the two centres proposed for closure alone. Almost all staff are women and many are people of the Global Majority.

We believe that more Children's Centre closures will follow as budgets are squeezed further and Hackney Council continue to make cuts to vital services. Children’s Centres provide vital support and services to local families and we must fight to keep them open!

No Children’s Centre nursery closures! No cuts to affordable childcare!

How it will be delivered

We will deliver the petition to Hackney Council.

Petition produced by: Beatrice Hackett, E2 8RT

Hackney, London, UK

Maps © Stamen; Data © OSM and contributors, ODbL




2024-03-26 13:47:04 +0000

1,000 signatures reached

2024-03-09 10:08:01 +0000

500 signatures reached

2024-03-02 10:39:26 +0000

100 signatures reached

2024-03-01 09:57:34 +0000

50 signatures reached

2024-03-01 07:58:26 +0000

25 signatures reached

2024-02-29 16:14:09 +0000

10 signatures reached