26 September 2017

Opening the playbox – Sutton families check out treasured toy library’s new home

The ATLP’s popular Four Oaks Toy Library has a new home – just a hop, skip and a jump from its previous location.

After nine years at the Four Oaks Cluster Room at Mere Green Primary School, the library has packed up the toy boxes and relocated to St James Church, where it will be piloting sessions during September and October.

The library loans out toys to youngsters from birth to eight-years-old and provides additional services, including sensory sessions for babies and children with additional needs. The move follows the success and expansion of Mere Green Primary School.

Toy story: many families enjoy the Toy Library’s friendly atmosphere


Fiona Godwin Four Oaks children’s Centre manager, said: “We’re delighted to celebrate a new chapter as the Toy Library settles in to its new home – many thanks to  St James Church for loaning us the space.

“We may have only moved up the road, but the library has been on a big journey since we opened our doors nearly a decade ago. This treasured community resource is a huge hit with families and we now welcome more than 800 members.

With so much uncertainty over the future of children’s centres, the Toy Library provides a supportive and familiar environment that brings people together and helps babies and children to flourish. We are delighted to be able to deliver all of that – and more – at our new location.

“A special mention must go to Journeys UK who took great care of our much-loved toys on their short, but exciting trip down the road.  It was all accomplished very smoothly and in excellent time.”

The library runs two different types of libraries: Tuesday 1.30-4pm and Wednesday 1-3pm (babies only) not 4th week of the month. Fourth Wednesday of the month- Sensory sessions for SEN by appointment only – 1.30-2.30pm. If you know of a child, under five with a visual or hearing impairment or with ASD who would benefit from a Sensory Session please e-mail lgregory@arthurterry.bham.sch.uk

Toy Library membership costs £5 a year per family. For this, parents can borrow toys for their children at a cost of a £2.80 a toy for a two-week loan.

The Four Oaks Toy Library is part of The Sutton Locality Children’s Centres, which also include Deanery, Holland House and New Hall. The Arthur Terry Learning Partnership (ATLP) holds governance.

Rated as ‘good’ by Ofsted, the Government education watchdog reported: ‘The Four Oaks Toy Library is an excellent resource and very much appreciated by parents and children. Parents report that staff are knowledgeable and give good advice regarding how to use specific toys to enhance children learning.’

For further information, please call 07824365980 or pop along to one of the sessions at the Toy Library at St. James Church, Mere Green.