Our Key Staff

The Team at Poppets

Here at Poppets we pride ourselves on having hugely dedicated, caring and highly qualified staff.

Currently we have 15 staff, 12 room based practitioners ranging from trainees to those qualified up to level 4. 

We are confident that your little one will thrive with us and would encourage you to visit the setting so that you can see everything in action.

 As well as those fully qualified to Level 3 in childcare, we have degree qualified and current students with us and trainees of the highest calibre. They all bring so many different qualities to Poppets and we are proud of each and every one of them for making our children so happy.

David and Jude Bessell - Owners

David and Jude took over the existing nursery in November 2014. 

They have been ‘silent partners’ in a chain of nurseries for 5 years but with David retiring from the Royal Navy after 23 years service, decided that the time was right to strike out on their own.

After searching 3 counties to find a setting good enough, they were delighted to find ‘Poppets’ a mere half mile from their door. They are extremely excited about giving their friends and neighbours the very best childcare they can.

Michelle Pateman - Nursery Manager

Michelle’s career in childcare began when she left school back in 2006 has a Level 3 in childcare and is Poppets Nursery Manager. She has worked in childcare since 2009 and has worked for three different nurseries within that time, having being a part of poppets since 2014.  

Michelle has had 12 years hands on experience within a nursery, and has enjoyed working as part of a loving dedicated team, where she aimed and stills does aim to learn as much as she can. 

Michelle has worked her way through the ranks from nursery practitioner, room leader, co-manager and finally manager. There isn’t much Michelle doesn’t know about looking after and caring for your ‘Poppets’.

Michelle loves seeing the relationships blossom between children and practitioner.  Michelle has had the pleasure of watching the children build their foundations and develop into wonderful little people, before heading off to school.

Michelle has an open door attitude and welcomes all parents and carers in to talk if they wish about any questions they may have. 

Michelle has just reverted the nursery back to using paper based journals, to ensure staff are spending as much quality time with the children as possible. The journals are accessible to the children and their parents/carers whenever they wish to look through them.

We have had wonderful feedback since reverting back, and are ensuring that parents have a vital part in their child’s learning by completing weekend observations, and sending in corresponding photos.

It also gives them a chance to ask any questions they feel they sometimes don’t always get a chance to at drop off or collection, a meeting is then arranged with the child’s key worker. 

Michelle is thrilled with the team of staff who have helped her to build and shape the nursery into a thriving and happy environment for children to be able to use their imagination and creativity to learn. 

Amy Johnson - Deputy Manager

Amy holds a childcare level 3 qualification and has been working within childcare since leaving school back in 2014. Within this time frame Amy has worked in other nurseries, gaining experience along the way. 

Amy started as an apprentice, where she gained the vital knowledge and understanding of children’s learning and development. Since starting with us Amy has progressed from a practitioner, to room leader and is now our Deputy Manager, where she works alongside Michelle. 

Together, Amy and Michelle push for the very best in practice both in themselves and within their staff. 

Amy hasn’t long been back from an eye opening experience in Africa, where she worked for three months teaching children under 11 years old. During this trip Amy would plan and teach English lessons for the children, plan school trips to places we take for granted, and took time to understand their culture. 

Amy’s role is to work alongside Michelle and to help her with the smooth running of the nursery. She also overlooks the adherence to the EYFS and the Development Matters guidance and will work alongside the staff in the rooms to help them further their practice.

Baby room

Chloe – Room Leader level 4

Bonnie – level 2 

Fifi – trainee 

Rainbow room

Sarah F – Room Leader level 3

Sam – level 3 

Abigail – trainee

Filiz – level 2

Mini pre-school

Faye – Room Leader level 3

Sarah B – level 3 

Charlie – unqualified

Abbi – level 2

Rising stars

Amy – Room Leader level 3 

Anna – level 3