Find a childcare provider

You can use our Children and Families Service Finder to find the best childcare setting for you.

Applying for a nursery place

To apply for a place at a day nursery, a pre-school a local authority maintained nursery (a nursery attached to a school) or a childminder, you will need to contact that childcare provider directly.

To find your nearest childcare provider, please use our children and families service finder.

You can also use the service finder to search for the following: 

  • Breakfast clubs
  • Creches
  • Childminders
  • Holiday clubs
  • Out of school clubs
  • Parent and toddler groups
  • Pre-schools
  • A local authority maintained nursery (a nursery attached to a school)

Children and Families Service Finder 

What do I need to know about my childcare provider?

It is really important that you and your child are happy with the childcare provider that you choose. We therefore recommend that you:

  • check they are registered with Ofsted by asking to see their Ofsted registration certificate
  • visit their premises
  • ask to see their training qualifications
  • find out about the services they provide
    • does the provider support children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)?

Your chosen childcare provider will be able to advise on whether they have places available or not. 

Should I have a contract with my childcare provider?

It is important that you always have a written contract with your childcare provider and that you both sign and keep a copy.

The contract should include:

  • How much you will pay
  • What hours your child should be paid for
  • Holiday arrangements
  • Emergency cover
  • Any individual needs of your child
  • How your funding works (eg does it cover the cost of lunches)
  • The provider's terms and conditions

Can I claim free childcare?

Parents are able to claim a free entitlement for all children aged 3 and 4 years old. Parents of 2 year olds may also be able to claim free childcare.

Find out more below about free childcare and when your child will qualify​:

How to claim free childcare

Other sources of support

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Fostering with Northamptonshire County Council

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