Nursery and Pre-school

Hyde Farm, Salisbury Road, Blandford Forum, DT11 8TX

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01258 454602

Full day care for children aged 3 months to 5 years old in Blandford Forum

Welcome to Archway Nursery! Your enquiry marks the beginning of an important phase in your child’s future development. We are located on the Cranborne Chase, a nationally designated area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, very close to the town of Blandford Forum. Our nursery is in a beautifully converted farmhouse which is divided into 5 separate areas, each room devoted to caring for a specific age group.

We’ve been present in the local community for over two decades and we’re proud to offer a happy and homely day care service to local parents. Our enthusiastic and committed staff undergo regular training and are here to inspire your child, encouraging every individual’s interests and needs.

Please get in touch at any time, we’d love to show you around!

Liz Cooper, Nursery Manager and Director

Liz Cooper, Nursery Manager and Director

Why not come and take a look?

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  • Home away from home environment in a large converted farm house
  • Nutritious homemade meals made fresh on-site everyday
  • Safe newly refurbished outdoor gardens for our little adventurers
  • Online learning journals to encourage parent engagement by sharing observations daily
  • Located on a nationally designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
  • Free Early Years Education Entitlement for 2, 3 & 4 year olds (15 & 30 Hours)

Age groups

Our nursery is split into 4 areas, with each room devoted to caring for a specific age range. We’ve designed our nursery so that children move between rooms when they are ready, not based on when their birthday is.

Here at Archway Nursery our days are not rigidly structured but all rooms try to keep to a routine which the children can recognise and anticipate. A familiar routine helps to ensure that your child is happy and secure.

Dolphins Room

In our youngest room, babies take part in many multi-sensory experiences, all to boost their awareness of the world around them.

We endeavour to follow your baby’s routine to match the one athome until they are ready to be gradually introduced to the routine that is followed in our older rooms.

Angelfish & Starfish Rooms

Our toddlers are split between two rooms: the Angelfish and the Starfish. Here the children have access to an environment, encouraging them to choose which room and activities to engage with, nurturing their growing independence. Here toddlers develop their creative skills through arts and crafts, music and movement.

Our excellent nursery staff support the children’s language development with verbal games, songs and stories, and also encourage plenty of imitation and conversation. Social development skills and peer relationships are bolstered through group activities and during meal times.


Children join our preschool from the age of 3 and gradually begin their preparation for school. We provide a carefully planned programme of activities, providing free play within a slightly more structured environment. Activities are provided to teach basic numbers, colours and shapes. The children also use of construction toys, puzzles and books to enhance their motor skills

We encourage children’s independence and have free-flow access between the three rooms including a large purpose-built art room which caters for many types of arts and crafts: clay modelling, painting, woodwork, science and cookery.

When the time does come for the children to continue their education journey in primary school, we are here to provide as much support as needed and liaise with local schools to ensure a smooth transition for all.


Our nursery and pre-school is open 7:45 am – 6:00 pm, for 51 weeks of the year. We are closed on bank holidays and for a week between Christmas and New Year.

  • Full Day Session 7:45 am – 6:00 pm
  • Morning Session: 7:45 am – 1:30 pm
  • Afternoon Session: 1:30 pm – 6:00 pm

We also offer a variety of flexible sessions in our preschool unit for 15 hours and 30 hours funding. Please give us a call to enquire.

Excellent nursery with caring and friendly staff. Our little girl attends this nursery full time and she loves every minute.

Victoria A

If you would like to leave a review of our nursery, please click here

Help with Fees

Archway Nursery is pleased to offer Free Early Years Education Entitlement for 2-year-olds subject to eligibility, as well as for 3-4-year-olds (15 and 30 hours).

The Childcare Choices website provides a straightforward explanation of all Government Childcare Support in one place, providing a simple way of seeing which schemes are available, with easy next steps to where you can find out more.

Using the Childcare Calculator you can quickly find out which of the offers are available to you and choose what works best for your family.

For further questions on fees and funding, please contact us.

Refer a Friend

If you have a friend or family member who is looking for a place for their child at Archway, please ask them to complete the Get in Touch form, stating “Referral + Your Name” in the comments box. If a place is available and they do register their child, both you and your friend could receive £25 off one month’s fees!

Terms and conditions apply.


We believe it’s very important to encourage our children to love eating healthy and nutritious food. These healthy habits remain with them through their entire lives and can be the foundation of a healthy lifestyle ahead.

We have a 5-star Food Hygiene Rating and are able to cater for all dietary requirements.

Fresh homemade food

Our dedicated on-site chef prepares healthy balanced meals on a daily basis and ensures our children are offered their 5-a-day

Varied seasonal menus

Menus are constantly varied to encourage curiosity whilst taking into account dietary and nutritional needs.


We teach our children about different types of food and how it helps them grow, encouraging good habits for the future.