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Victoria goes back to the future to make her dreams come true


VICTORIA Newman has known she wanted to run a childrens' nursery ever since she was a toddler - and now her dream's come true.

Victoria, 24, has realised her lifetime's ambition by opening The Wendy House Day Nursery (2007) Ltd, Harrogate, after gaining financial backing from Yorkshire Bank Financial Solutions Centre (FSC), Harrogate.

There are places for up to 44 full-time children ranging from three months old to aged five at the Ofsted-approved, The Wendy House Day Nursery based at Beckwith Knowle, where thousands of people travel to work each day.

Now, far from dreaming about running a day nursery, Victoria, of Burn Bridge, Harrogate, has created jobs for nine staff - most of whom are older than her - although she has also persuaded her mother, Angela, out of retirement to be business manager.

Victoria, who started studying for vocational child care and education qualifications while still at school and has worked at several nurseries in Harrogate and Otley, says: "I can remember when I was tiny and my mum dropped me off at a child minder thinking that I wanted to run a children's nursery when I grew up.

"I've never wanted to do anything else and opening The Wendy House really is a dream come true even - even though it has been a bit scary employing staff and dealing with the realities of business ownership."

The Wendy House Day Nursery, which was re-furbished by landlord Commercial Estates, is in 4,500 sq ft, two-storey premises, with nurseries downstairs and offices above, which was previously used as an electrical store by nearby plant hire giant, Vp Plc.

The six-figure Yorkshire Bank loan has been used to help fund the refurbishment, fit out the nursery to the highest specifications, acquire garden play equipment including slides, a play horse and a soft-surface play area  and make a rent deposit.

Business manager at Yorkshire Bank's James Street FSC, Mark Iley, says: "It was clear from speaking to Victoria that this is a venture she has had aspirations towards for many years and it is a pleasure to help her."

Victoria's mother, Angela, who retired from the civil service nine years ago says: "It is challenging and inspiring to be working with Victoria. I realised she would do this even before she did. When I picked her up from the childminder when she was little, she was always reading to the little ones.

"When we secured the loan and opened the door on our first day I said. `whatever you do, please don't tell me you've changed your mind'."

About Yorkshire Bank
Yorkshire Bank was founded in 1859 in Halifax, West Yorkshire.  Today, the Bank has 190 branches, a strong personal customer base and a growing business capability in the North of England and the Midlands.  In 2006, Yorkshire Bank was voted the UK's 'Best Business Bank' by the Forum of Private Business.

Financial Solutions Centres:
Yorkshire Bank Financial Solutions Centres (FSC) offer Members a tailored range of business and private banking services under one roof. A team of specialist partners, each with considerable local experience, work together to provide Members with end to end solutions for their business and private banking needs. In addition to banking services, the FSCs also operate as a hub for local business, with a range of networking opportunities and meeting facilities available as a benefit of membership. 
Over 70 FSCs are located around the UK and in 2006 represented over half of the National Australia Bank Group's UK income.

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