While Salford City Council found £1.5million to keep the city's five OFSTED rated outstanding nurseries open until September 2019, the fight for their future is very much alive and kicking.
Today, the Fight For The Five campaign held a Fun Day in Buile Hill Park and its Hall, attended by around two hundred parents, staff and campaign supporters, which began with a car boot sale and ended with a barbeque.
In between, there was a full kids' entertainment show by Silly Milly and Jolly Molly, popcorn and candyfloss by Pink Giraffe Party, pre-loved toys and books stalls, cakes and sweets, a bouncy castle and a raffle and tombola.
"To see the amount of support from people outside the nursery campaign all coming together and helping is amazing" said Danielle Walker, whose three children all went to the threatened Little Hulton nursery...
"They've now all left" she explained "But my eldest boy, who is now coming up to eight, has got autism and, as other parents have said, they support you massively...
"There's more children out there who have got additional needs and there's nowhere the families can go because private nurseries can't really accommodate them" she added "My son was in a private nursery before Little Hulton. Without them I wouldn't have got through that really difficult stage for my children."
Indeed, while the kids had fun, the parents and campaigners were deadly serious in their fight to save the nurseries. They even had little cut outs of Nadhim Zahawi, the Tory Government Under-Secretary of State for Education.
Zahawi promised a Government statement on the nurseries but hasn't responded to a request from the Salford Star and campaigners for an update. The politician is in Manchester on Thursday attending a conference at The Midland Hotel and parents will be there to remind him...and are inviting everyone to join them.
"We're organising a bit of a get together outside there on Thursday lunchtime, 12:30, just to make sure we keep the pressure on and make sure we can get that funding to secure the future for these nurseries" said Lee Shannon, whose child goes to Higher Broughton nursery.
"He's agreed to meet us and give us a statement but he's not done so" added Maybo Chiu, whose son has autism, and speech and language delay, and goes to Little Hulton nursery "The nursery has been amazing. They've helped us go through the educational welfare plan process and secured a place for him at Springwood School, which caters for special needs, in September.
"I just need to be here to support this campaign and keep fighting" she added "Yes we've got an extra year's funding but we need to keep fighting now, not at the end of September next year when it's going to be too late. We need the Government to change the rules on funding and grants."
Maybo's sentiments were echoed by Martin Rosenfield, a foster carer for Salford who has put four children, all with special needs, through Little Hulton nursery over the last five years...
"The nursery has supported me incredibly well" he explained "Today is to raise awareness and funds for the nurseries campaign, and hopefully get the word out there that we need to save these nurseries."
A fun day was had by all – underpinned with the serious message that these five outstanding nurseries need to be saved. As soon as possible.
For a full background on the Fight For The Five campaign see previous Salford Star articles – click here