THE Bishop of Southampton has officially opened a yurt at a New Forest pre-school.

The bespoke yurt, surrounded by woodland, has been designed to give two to five-year olds an environment where they can learn and play while being inspired by the natural world around them.

Based in Boldre, the pre-school is one of three Launchpad Early Years settings that have been developed by the Diocese of Winchester’s Social Enterprise. Each pre-school is linked with the local parish or Church school and offers early years education with a Christian ethos and a commitment to excellence.

Launchpads provide an environment where children can explore, play, and learn with the support of caring and dedicated staff.

Daily Echo:

At her visit to the Boldre pre-school, Bishop Debbie met children who benefit from the education offered there, and also spoke to staff who have developed the new pre-school since its inception in 2019.

The Right Reverend Debbie Sellin, Bishop of Southampton, said: “Seeing the children learning and discovering the world at Launchpad:Boldre was a joy. The new yurt and the rural location make a wonderful setting in which young people can play and learn at the same time. The early years education that Launchpads offer is helping children to be kind, confident and inquisitive. It was great to meet so many of the children who clearly love their time at Launchpad, and it is a real testament to the team there who have achieved so much.”

As well as the new yurt, children at Launchpad:Boldre are also able to explore the pre-school’s three garden areas, one for gardening and wildlife, another for building dens and exploring sand and water, and the third a communication friendly space, where children can develop a sense of responsibility in caring for the environment and each other.