Our History

St John’s Playtime Pre-school was established in 1980.  Originally we were a very small group operating from a small downstairs room in St John’s United Reformed Church.

We have successfully grown over the years and are now able to offer all day hours for up to 34 children.  We are still based in St John’s United Reformed Church, but we now occupy the large upstairs room and have the use of a secure garden area with a sandpit for the children to use.

We pride ourselves on offering high quality childcare and all our staff are fully qualified in all aspects of Early Years and Childcare.

We are fully Ofsted registered and were rated as ‘Good’ during our recent inspection in February 2018.  To view the inspection report, click on the link below:


Our Facilities

The pre-school has use of the first floor of the Church and a fully secure garden area outside.

Access to the first floor is via stairs or a wheelchair/pushchair accessible lift.

Our pre-school is run in a spacious, bright hall which has a dedicated area for sensory and quiet play.  The hall is set up with different areas for different activties, including messy play, a drawing area, small world play and a home corner.

There is a kitchen area off the hall in which the staff prepare snacks and drinks for the children.

The children also have access to toilets and nappy changing facilities.



Our Hours and Fees

We are registered with Ofsted to provide care, learning and development for up to 34 children aged 2 – 4 years at any one time.

We are open Monday - Friday during term-time from 08.15 - 16.15 (closing at 16.00 on Fridays).

We offer 'Flexible Hours' to our families so parents and carers can choose when they would like their children to attend.


All children are entitled to 15 hours of funded, free Early Education in the term after their 3rd birthday, (to clarify, your child has to be born before 31st August to receive funding for the Autumn term, 31st December to receive funding for the Spring term and 31st March to receive funding for the Summer term).

From September 2017, eligible 3 and 4 year olds will be entitled to 30 hours of funded, free Early Education.  We offer spaces for eligible children within our setting.

Further information can be found on the Government's Childcare Choices website: www.childcarechoices.gov.uk

Funding may also be available for some 2 year olds who meet certain eligibility criteria.  You can check your eligibility at: www.suffolk.gov.uk/two


We charge £4.30 per hour for any fee paying children (i.e. those who aren't funded yet or those who wish to have additional hours).

We offer families the flexibility to pay their fees on a weekly basis if they wish, and accept payments via bank tranfer, cash or cheque.

Please contact us for up to date fee prices for children aged between 18 months and 2 years.

We do accept Childcare Vouchers as payment, and we also accept children with 'Golden Tickets'.

We are also signed up to the new 'Tax-Free Childcare' incentive - ask in the office for more details.


St John's Playtime Pre-school, St John's UR Church, Cowper Street, Ipswich, IP4 5JD

Tel: (01473) 716831     Registered Charity: 1027030     Ofsted Registered: 251650