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Charity donation funds new ‘Kindness cabin’ at Lincoln nursery

5 July 2022

Nursery school pupils are making the most of a tranquil new learning environment thanks to a donation from a Lincoln charity.

Children at St Giles Nursery are enjoying their new Kindness Cabin, which has been installed in the school’s garden in Addison Drive, Lincoln.

The cabin was funded through a donation from local charity BNA and was built by Lindum Group, a construction company based in North Hykeham.

Headteacher Amy Stancer said the finished structure would make a huge difference to the early years provision provided by the nursery, which is one of just two Local Authority Maintained settings in the city.

“This space will be of significant benefit to our children. Many of those starting with us now were born just before or during the Covid pandemic and have lived their early years in lockdowns and in isolation,” she said.

“Because they’ve missed out on opportunities to socialise as babies and toddlers, the bright and loud communal learning environments can be a little overwhelming for some of the children.

“The new cabin provides a calming space where we can engage them in small group activities, gentle structured play and peaceful reading and storytelling.

“Despite our location in the middle of a busy urban estate, the cabin is very quiet, and it looks out on to our forest area. It’s really relaxing. Plus, the natural materials and neutral colour palette is a lovely contrast from the vibrant decor in the rest of the school.

“We absolutely love it.”

Miss Stancer began fundraising to pay for the cabin in 2020. She approached Lindum to see if the company would donate money or materials to the project. Given the scale of the work involved, Lindum put her in touch with BNA, which is a grant-making charity based in Lincoln.

After consideration by the charity board, it agreed to fund the cost of the new building. Lindum agreed to donate its inhouse design expertise to ensure Miss Stancer’s vision became a reality. It then negotiated the construction contract.

Lindum director Nick Hammond said: “Amy had a very clear idea of what she wanted and the kind of environment she wanted to create.

“Our design team worked with her to refine the plans and to choose materials which would suit the brief. We suggested abandoning plans to board up the internal walls and instead suggested leaving the exposed wood, to give it more of a log cabin feel.

“The structure was installed on an existing concrete base and took just over seven weeks to complete. We are really pleased with the finished building.”

St Giles Nursery welcomes children between the ages of two and four years old. It currently has 140 children on roll and employs 26 staff.

Unlike many private nursery settings, the school stayed open during the Covid pandemic to look after children with additional needs, those from deprived homes and the children of key workers.