A NURSERY worker has been honoured for her excellent work with special needs children.

Pam Burrell, a staff member at Portland Nurseries, has received an Outstanding Contribution Award.

Pam has worked across the four nurseries based in Edgerton and Lindley for more than 15 years.

She was praised for her work with special needs children by Rosemary Murphy OBE, managing director of the nurseries. She said that Pam had changed the lives of many children and parents through her expert support.

Rosemary also read out letters from two parents which sang Pam’s praises.

Staff members Natalie Hawkins and Lucy McCluskey from Holly Banknursery and Melissa Lumb from Oakwood House were handed Rising Star awards.

The award recognised their contribution over the past year and potential to become outstanding practitioners.

Prizes were also awarded to staff achieving childcare, leadership and management qualifications. Hayley Brown was congratulated for achieving a BA Hons in Early Years and nursery managers Samantha Richmond and Julie Lister were honoured for achieving Early Years Professional Status.

Rosemary said: “This has been a long road for two exceptional managers. They have worked 40 hours a week and while doing this they have been studying for their honours degrees juggling work and young families.”

Around 80 members of staff had gathered at the Textile Centre for Excellence for the awards presentation and annual review.

Training was also given which was led by Jan White, a world-renowned expert on outdoor play.