The Marlowes invited me along to find out more about the free childcare on offer at Tinies Crèche. Parents can take advantage of two hours free childcare at the shopping centre, allowing you time to do a workout at the new PureGym, pick up some shopping in The Marlowes shopping centre or perhaps even get a haircut at Toni & Guy!
Tinies Crèche is provided in partnership with The Marlowes and offers shoppers two hours free childcare for children aged 2-10 years old, with any spend over £1 in the centre. All you need to do is:
- register your child online before you visit. Click here to register.
- when you want to use Tinies Crèche, check your child in at the Tinies front desk at The Marlowes. Places are allocated on a first come, first served basis.
- to access this free service Tinies Crèche ask that you share your shopping experience by allowing the staff to photograph your shopping receipts when collecting your child. You only need to spend a minimum of £1 to enjoy this great service.
My first impressions – Tinies Crèche
A centre that provides free childcare? Is this too good to be true? When I step out of the lift it’s immediately obvious that The Marlowes is currently benefitting from huge investment. The shopping centre is bright, modern and clean. The Marley’s Stay and Play area outside Tinies Crèche is colourful, inviting and perfect for young children.
Tinies Crèche opened in October 2019 and is Ofsted registered. There are two sets of locked gates to walk through and then I find myself in a spacious room where children are working with Tinies Crèche staff in different areas. In one corner there is a painting table where two children are sitting happily printing with paints. In another area there is an interactive screen and a member of Tinies Crèche’s staff is leading an activity on the screen. There’s also a well-equipped role play area, a story area and even a ceiling projector room where they run lots of difference activities, including a Movie Time on Thursdays from 5pm.
Tinies Crèche also work closely with PureGym to ensure that there is a Tinies Crèche class for children running at the same time as one of the gym classes at PureGym. This means that during term time your child can enjoy Music Mondays, Tuesday Tinies Singalong, Wiggle and Jiggle Wednesdays, Thursday Storytime or Movietime and Fun Fitness Fridays, whilst you get to do a work out. It’s great to see the crèche and the gym working together to provide a service that works for families.
More Time For You – PureGym
With little ones safely in the care of Tinies Crèche you can then make the most of two hours free childcare. I was invited to try a session at PureGym in The Marlowes, which is only a short walk away from the crèche.
PureGym is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and offers a low cost membership that’s definitely worth checking out. Walking into the PureGym at The Marlowes I was really impressed with the set-up and the space. There’s a large free weights area, fixed-weight resistance machines, plenty of cardio equipment, an area for stretching, as well as a spin studio and a fitness studio where they run classes.
Inside the changing rooms my only issue was that you need to take a padlock for the lockers and I didn’t have a padlock with me – what a newbie! Thankfully the helpful staff were able to come to the rescue but if you’re heading to PureGym for the first time then make sure you have a padlock with you.
I had a really positive experience at PureGym. I was able to use all the machines that I wanted to, the music was great, the changing rooms were clean and the staff were helpful. I managed to test out the treadmills, cross trainer, stepper and exercise bikes. The equipment was really easy to use and there were members of PureGym staff on hand all the time to answer questions. I find it really difficult to make time for the gym but I really enjoyed the session at PureGym and the reasonable membership fees and 24 hour opening times make it a realistic option for me.
I’m really struggling to find any negatives from my visit as it’s hard to find anything wrong with a centre that’s offering free childcare for parents who can use that time to visit PureGym, pop into the shops in the Marlowes and grab some essentials before heading back to the crèche. I suppose that the main downside is that the Tinies Crèche service is provided on a first come, first served basis and you can’t pre-book. The advice is to go to Tinies Crèche when you arrive at The Marlowes to check availability, so you can plan once you’re at the shopping centre.
If you haven’t been to The Marlowes recently then I really recommend a visit. This is a shopping centre that aims to make life easier for families from Tinies Crèche to the Family Room, the Marleys Stay and Play area to easy parking. Let me know what you think on Instagram where you can take a look at my Stories if you click on The Marlowes Highlights.
Disclosure: This post is brought to you as part of a collaboration with The Marlowes.