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The NMT Nursery Awards 2010

A Winning Team at the Nursery Management Awards 2010

It was a tense lead up to the Nursery Management Today Awards Gala Presentation 2010 but the wait was worth the nerves when on Friday 26th November Highfield Day Nursery won the Nursery Team Award and their head cook, Marilyn Howe won the Nursery Cook Award. Congratulations was also given to Michele Torry from Cedar Park Nursery who was shortlisted but narrowly missed out winning the Nursery Nurse Award 2010.

The event itself was a glitzy affair at the Hilton Metropole Hotel in London, with hundreds of people attending, 20 of whom were from the Childbase team. None of the Childbase team would have ever been there without the hard work and effort that they display everyday at the nurseries, not to mention, the incredible achievement of completing the nominations for this award.

For Marilyn Howe entering the Best Cook/Chef category required more than putting pen to paper. Having been nominated as worthy of the award by Highfield's Nursery Manager, Marilyn was then invited to attend a cook off event at Hammersmith College, London against five other nursery cooks. Her winning meal was scrutinised and judged by a panel of four industry experts ranging from nutritionists, chefs and childcare professionals. The meal that won over the judge's taste buds was a hearty Shepherd's Pie followed by Lemon and Yoghurt Loaf and features regularly on the children's menu at Highfield Nursery. Jo Hassan, the Nursery Manager gave praise to Marilyn and said:

"We all knew that Marilyn would prepare a delicious meal for the judging panel but that didn't stop her being very nervous before the cook off but thankfully her nerves didn't get in the way of her cooking! We are all delighted that Marilyn was recognised for her fabulous cooking and we know we very lucky to have her as part of the Highfield team"

And it was Jo's team who also went on to win the Nursery Team Award that evening, with each and every 36 members of staff being recognised for their passion, dedication and contribution to the running of Highfield Nursery. With an Outstanding status already awarded to Highfield by Ofsted for the very high level of care they provide to children attending the nursery, the Highfield team were delighted to achieve extra recognition for other aspects of their care.

Commenting on the Award Jo Hassan, Nursery Manager, said:

"After we completed our nomination Alison Beard, Area Manager and I had to attend a panel interview in London. On that day I know that both Alison and I really communicated how passionate, dedicated and motivated we all are as a team at Highfield and it is these qualities that make a difference. From our nursery practitioners, trainees through to our kitchen assistants we all work as a sharing, caring team who give the best to the children in our care. Our staff development and progression was also recognised as first class and is really reflected in our strong staff retention levels. We are delighted to have won the Nursery Team Award and the plaque is sitting proudly in our office, alongside the golden envelope with our name in it! "