Together again...

4 Judging panel

Welcome to this special publication featuring

the inspirational stories of all the winners of

the Nursery World Awards 2021, the top accolades for the early years sector. After moving our 2020 Awards to an online event in the face of pandemic restrictions, we are delighted to have once more been able to hold the ceremony in real life at the wonderful Brewery in London and for everyone to be able to

celebrate their achievements together. However, 2021 has continued to throw huge challenges at the early years sector. The scale of the difficulties and upheaval resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic would have seemed unimaginable 18 months ago. Our wonderful people and settings have tackled all this with determination, dedication and, frequently, heroism, in the face of political leaders who often seemed to ignore their needs and vital contribution to the welfare of young children and their families. And through everything, there have been many examples of heartwarming stories, inspiring practice and excellent new ways of doing things that will endure, some of which are featured here. Indeed, we introduced a new category for this year’s Awards – the Covid-19 Hero, and received so many amazing entries that we have a shortlist of nine, including our winner and three high commendations! And there were many really impressive entries for other categories, with Nursery Group of the Year, for example, yielding a very strong shortlist. Thank you to everyone who took the time and made the effort to enter despite the unparalleled circumstances. We are really grateful, as ever, to our panel of expert judges – leading consultants, trainers, authors, providers, leaders and academics –for all their hard work in using their vast experience and knowledge to make those tough decisions, and for coping once more with online judging sessions! And a huge thanks to our sponsors who have given their much-valued support to our Awards and made it all possible.

Liz Roberts Editor-in-chief of Nursery World Chair of judges


7 Nursery of the Year

9 Nursery Group of the Year

10 Pre-School of the Year

11 Early Years in School

13 Childminding Business of

the Year

15 Covid-19 Hero

17 Nursery Manager of the Year

18 Nursery Practitioner of the Year

19 Nursery Operations/Regional

Manager of the Year

20 Trainer of the Year

23 Childminder of the Year

25 Nanny of the Year

27 Outstanding Contribution

28 Newcomer of the Year

29 Lifetime Achievement

31 Health & Well-Being

33 Working with Parents

35 Inclusive Practice

36 Eco-Friendly Early Years

37 Working with Babies and Toddlers

38 Enabling Environments

39 Community Support

40 Team Development

41 Online and Social Media

42 Professional Books

NurseryWorld Awards | 3