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Fair Isle Family Nurture Centre

Fife, UK

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project overview

Supporting families through early learning and childcare

As part of the Scottish Government’s 1,140 hours provision, Fair Isle Family Nurture Centre provides early learning and childcare (ELC) for children between two and five years old. The centre boasts a shared internal flexible space with four playrooms and outdoor areas, as well as a kitchen area.

Supporting a staggered entry transition into primary school, the centre is designed around the four key principles of the Scottish Government’s blueprint; quality, flexibility, accessibility and affordability. Ensuring the children’s care and support needs are managed sensitively, whilst answering the demand for new nurseries which can manage increased hours.

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design development

Flexible and accessible education for the community

Supporting Fife Council’s wider sustainability objectives, the nursery provides future proof, adaptable learning spaces for the next generation. Maximising natural daylight through roof lights and large windows, alongside low energy lighting and PV panels.

All the playrooms have a sanctuary space, designed for children to relax with the support of a range of tools to recognise and identify their emotions. This enables them to develop metacognition skills to recognise and regulate their feelings.

As part of the Government's expansion in ELC, the centre responds to local requirements where income is lower than the national average. Not only improving opportunities for children through learning and playing but also supporting the wider family unit.

Sitting on a redeveloped brownfield site, the one storey nursery lies in a predominantly residential area of Kirkcaldy. Our design is a modern addition to the area which respects the surrounding local character and context. Sitting comfortably alongside existing buildings which vary in age and condition.

Incorporating a simple palette of materials, the nursery is a timber kit building clad in light grey brick. Steel posts and beams support the canopy areas and the pitched roof with large roof lights illuminate the playrooms, flexible space and circulation areas.

Landscape design

Creating a place to run, play, and learn

The site layout was carefully considered to encourage a relationship between indoor and outdoor learning, with the nursery in the centre surrounded by outdoor play areas. Canopies extend out over part of the nursery gardens, encouraging biodiversity through an orchard area with fruit trees, wildflower grassland, tree planting, bat and bird boxes.

The new trees sit alongside a new car park, where pedestrian safety is prioritised through designated pick up / drop off points, buggy and bicycle shelters near the entrance and a paved pedestrian area leading parents and their children to the door.

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key information

Project summary


Kirkcaldy, KY2 6EG


Fife Council






Four playrooms
Outdoor play areas
Kitchen area
Shared internal flexible space


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