The Nursery Manager is Mel Mitchell. Mel is responsible to the Directors for the day-to-day management and forward planning of the Nursery. She appoints staff, ensures children are safe, happy and well cared for, and liaises with parents and carers. The Designated Safe-Guarding Lead is Mel Mitchell.

The Business Manager is Jemma Fletcher. Jemma is responsible to the Directors for the financial and developmental aspects of the company.


All All members of staff are appropriately trained, have been DBS checked to an enhanced level and are trained in Paediatric First Aid. We were inspected by Ofsted in November 2019. They rated Green Lane Nursery and Childcare Centre as "Outstanding". As members of the Durham County Council’s Child Carers’ Organisation, our co-ordinator advises the Nursery of any changes to Ofsted's procedures.

Staff attend regular training to keep them up to date.

Staff recognise the importance of training and quality monitoring systems offered by Durham County Council’s Early Years team, which helps to develop further best practice.

Deputy Manager - Christianne Tarn

Minnies Room - Sophie Gipps (Leader)
Kirsty Hutchinson, Caitlin Owen, Amelia Stubbs-Ferry, Lucy Watson

Rising Star's Room - Lauren McGarr (Leader)
Rebekah Clerk, Savannah Gibson, Karen Hinch, Sam Howe, Emma James, Lucy Watson

Pre-school / Club - Christianne Tarn (Pre-School Leader)
Lindsay Alderson (Club Leader)
Angela Bellwood, Ruth Porter, Diane Raine, Hannah White, Millie Hawcroft, Sam Proffit, Lucy Watson

Supply Practitioner – Helen Scott


Iain Brown (Chair)                 - Business Development Manager
Sarah Hamilton                     - Department for Education
David Ewart                            - Retired Headmaster
Anthony Mawer                     - Retired Civil Servant

The Nursery Accountant is Jane Ascroft.‍

Directors oversee the strategic management and planning of the Nursery. All Directors have a DBS certificate and are OFSTED registered. They meet monthly with the Nursery Manager and Business Manager to discuss matters relating to the Nursery.

Minutes of all meetings are taken.

Annual accounts are compiled and audited by the Nursery’s Business Manager for the Directors and accountant, and are lodged with Companies House and the Charity Commission.

The Chair of Directors can be contacted by letter via the Nursery.

Whilst Directors share the responsibility for the Nursery’s strategic management, each has an area of special interest:

Child Protection and Safeguarding:  David Ewart
Health and Safety:                                  David Ewart
Education and Welfare:                        David Ewart
Accommodation and Equipment:     Iain Brown
Finance:                                                     Iain Brown
Policies:                                                      Iain Brown
Staff links and Human Resources:     Sarah Hamilton
Management Supervision:                   Sarah Hamilton


Iain Brown – has a child at Green Lane Church of England Controlled Primary School where he is a parent Governor. He studied agriculture and ran his own business.  He is currently a new business development manager for a global company.  He is passionate about the importance of ‘a good start to education’, is an active member of a local church and a trustee of Barnard Castle Guide HQ.  As Chair of Directors, he co-ordinates the strategic business and leadership oversight of the Nursery.

David Ewart - has lived in Barnard Castle for 30 years.  His daughters were educated at Green Lane Church of England Controlled Primary School. He has taught economics, geography and mathematics in maintained and independent schools, retiring as Headmaster of Barnard Castle School in 2010.Interests include Duke of Edinburgh’s Award assessment, rugby refereeing, governance of schools, offender management and overseas’ travel. His grandsons are now of primary ages.

Sarah Hamilton - has had two children pass through the Nursery and is very pleased to continue her association now in the role of a Director.  She is a trained nursery nurse and worked in nurseries for 10 years prior to joining the Department for Education where she worked on the development of early years’ policy; she was involved in developing the EYFS.  She still works in the DFE but on other policy areas to include school admissions and home school transport.

Anthony Mawer - relocated and returned to live in Barnard Castle in 2018. He has two sons who were formerly educated at Teesdale School, and four grandsons. Previously employed as a Civil Servant completing over thirty years in the Prison Service, retiring holding the position of Governor grade, also served as a local Parish Councillor for ten years before returning to Barnard Castle. An active member of the local Methodist Church, he enjoys singing in the local Musical societies, most sports, and has an active interest in Walking and Golf.