Downside Neighbourhood Centre
Centre manager: Lisa Swales
We are a recently furnished Sure Start children's centre based in the school grounds of Downside Lower School at the foot of Dunstable Blows Downs. We hold regular play activities throughout the week for under-five-year-olds and under-eights in the school holidays (children must be accompanied by a responsible adult). These include 'stay and play', held in our large well-equipped playroom, 'tiny tots', ideal for new babies to toddler stage, and 'Saturdads' which is especially for male carers.
The sessions are staffed by either family support workers, a centre teacher or a speech therapist who is also there to help with any queries or worries parents or guardians might have.
Our aim is to provide children with new and exciting experiences, allowing them to explore for themselves whilst increasing their social, physical, speech and language development and understanding skills.
The centre also hosts other services including Job Centre Plus, Connexions, family law and police surgeries and a baby clinic run by health visitors. Within our grounds we have a benched picnic area and community food gardens maintained by local residents.