Former pub and Astwood Bank landmark, The Coach House on Feckenham Road, has been completely renovated and will re-open as Astwood Smiles Nursery in June.

Astwood Bank residents were left with an empty building after The Coach House closed in 2010 and have been watching the construction project’s progression since work started this January.

Olivia Waters, owner and managing director of Astwood Smiles Nursery, said: “The original building is over 200 years old, with an extension built in the 1980s. Having lived in Astwood Bank throughout my childhood I’ve always been familiar with the building and its central location and large car park so, when I decided to start a new venture in the form of Astwood Smiles, I couldn’t think of a better venue.

“It’s been a real family affair getting the building stripped out with me, my husband and father-in-law all rolling up our sleeves to help out. It was really important for me to retain the original building as it has been part of the village for so long, but it has meant a lot of work internally to completely change the layout to make it suitable for a nursery environment."

The garden will be the final project before it opens on June 30.

The building will feature new equipment and furniture, including the latest technology as well as extensive outdoor space with play and learning based on the Forest Schools initiative.

Steve Cremin, director of Cremin Construction, which is carrying out the building work on-site, said: “Transforming a neglected pub into a bright, welcoming, state-of-the-art nursery has been a really interesting project to work on. We’ve been very lucky that the local community has been so interested in and supportive of the work that we are doing."

The new owner and her nursery manager, Alison Byng, have built a relationship with Astwood Bank First School and will be offering before and after school places for pupils, and the nursery will have access to the Forest School on-site.

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