3/26/2024 | Childcare & Education

The Edinburgh day nursery landscape: LA and PVI settings

On 19th February 2024, it was widely announced that plans to phase out funded childcare in private and independent nurseries to parents who live outside Edinburgh are being drawn up by council leaders.


Image: Edinburgh skyline taken from Calton Hill at sunset, by Connor Mollison for Unsplash

In this article, I hope to provide a window into the position of Local Authority (LA) contrasted with PVI (Private, Voluntary, or Independent) childcare provision in the Edinburgh market and illustrate how key the private sector is to the successful provision and delivery of high-quality childcare. Against this landscape, we’ll also take a brief look at what impact the proposed funding changes might have on day nursery businesses in Edinburgh.


According to the Care Inspectorate (CI) website, up to the end of 2023, there were a total of 255 childcare settings (day nurseries and after-school clubs) in Edinburgh, with registered spaces for 14,803, and an average setting size of 58.05 places. A split between Edinburgh City Council and the Private Sector is illustrated below;

Edinburgh City Council

Number of settings = 110 (43%)
Total registered spaces = 5,818 (39.3%)
Average setting size by registered spaces = 52.89

Private Sector

Number of settings = 145 (57%)
Total registered spaces = 8,985 (60.7%)
Average setting size by registered spaces = 61.96

This shows that, on average, private settings supply a larger proportion of childcare provision in Edinburgh than the council currently does... 

For the full article in Nursery World, click here.

As each day nursery is different, it is difficult to provide generic advice around these funding changes for owners of nurseries in the city, however, if you would like to discuss what these changes mean for your business specifically, please feel free to pick up the phone or email me for an impartial discussion: callum.lancaster@christie.com / 07754 559 529