30th September 2022

You may have seen in the news today that we have announced we are seeking other providers to take over the running of 11 of our 18 YMCA early years settings. The 11 settings looking for new owners are Gosport, Portsea, Warren Park, Dunsbury Way, Sharps Copse, Barn Owls, New Milton, Townhill, Weston, Newtown and Millbrook. We will continue to run our 7 nurseries at Fairthorne Manor, Eastleigh, Andover, Woolston, Whale Island, Newport and Shanklin.

We have been forced to make this very sad decision because of the chronic underfunding of the Government’s “free” 15- and 30-hour childcare schemes. This underfunding leaves us with a gap of over £500,000 to find every year from our other charitable funds. Given the wider cost of living increases, it now means we are using our charitable reserves to subsidise the Government’s policy, which is not sustainable.

In the meantime, it is business as usual across the YMCA for children, young people and families. We will keep this page updated with news but please feel free to email any questions to us at [email protected]. A FAQ is being created and will be updated on this page and on YMCA Fairthorne Group social media pages. Any enquiries about ownership can be made to Nick Brown, Christie & Co at [email protected].


Phillipa Spicer

Chief Finance Officer YMCA Fairthorne Group


We have received a lot of interest from other providers. It will take some time for our agent to complete their due diligence to identify which can be progressed, but it gives us a sense of hope at this early stage.

We plan to make a firm decision by the end of November and we will update you regularly with progress and news.  In the meantime it is business as usual and your child will continue to receive the high quality early years education and care you have come to expect from us.

We have had a huge amount of interest and we are hopeful that we will find a new owner but if we do not and your nursery is set to close then we will give you at least a month’s notice at the end of November.

We will continue to offer free funded childcare and any new provider will be registered with the local authority to deliver funded childcare.

We have had lots of interest from other providers and so we are continuing to welcome new children to nursery. We will give you at least a month’s notice of any future change.

Yes our existing terms and conditions still apply.

We are writing to each of our MPs and requesting a meeting. We met with many of them over the past year and we have also been involved in discussions with Department for Education. We will continue to communicate about the issue with the government.

Please email [email protected] and you will receive a direct response plus this FAQ will be updated regularly.