New Elstree nursery plans
A private Jewish nursery is planned to cater for the growing number of observant Jewish families moving into the Elstree area.
Set to open in January, Little Bicks is the creation of 28-year-old mother-of-two Rivka Bicks, who moved to Borehamwood with her husband Matthew just before the birth of their two-year-old daughter Shoshanna.
The Bicks put Shoshanna's name down at birth for the existing and heavily over-subscribed Gilah nursery at Borehamwood Synagogue, where they are members. They were disappointed to discover that she would not be offered one of Gilah's 90 places until she was almost three.
A qualified reception teacher who became a child-minder after her daughter's birth, Mrs Bicks says she has been inundated with requests from working mums desperate to find local kosher day-care.
Together with sister-in-law Louise Bicks, who is qualifying as a nursery teacher, Mrs Bicks found premises in a community centre in Arundel Drive.
"It is perfect for our purposes," she explained, "and being right across town from Gilah, is in a good position to serve the growing number of young Jewish families now moving into the south side of Borehamwood."
She expects all its 32 places to be filled by April. And as a plus for working mothers, it will also open outside of term time. Although its hours will initially be from 9-to-4, it is hoped to extend them.
Mrs Bicks adds that the venture has the backing of Borehamwood's minister Rabbi Naftali Brawer and his wife Dina. "I am proud that I'll be providing a much-needed service for Jewish working mums in the area."