Session Times and Fees

We are open term-time only – Monday to Friday for 6½ hours per day.

  • Morning sessions: 9:00 – 12:00
  • Lunch club: 12:00 – 12:30
  • Afternoon sessions: 12:30 – 3:30

Children may attend for any combination of the above, as long as we have space available.


We are a registered charity, managed by a voluntary committee of parents. All children aged 3 years and above are entitled to a free, part-time early education place of 15 hours per week for 38 weeks per year from the calendar block after their third birthday. Some children aged 2 are also eligible for 15 hours of free education. There is an eligibility checker on the Northamptonshire County Council website, for further information about free childcare click here. The Pre-school applies for the funding on behalf of your child (you will be required to sign a declaration form in January, April and September).

Fees are payable for any hours which are not funded, currently £4.30 an hour. We set the fees at a level merely to cover costs and ensure that we can continue to fulfil our charitable aims.  We will always give at least six weeks’ notice of any fee increases.

  • Morning session fee (9:00 – 12:00) – £12.90
  • Lunch club (12:00 – 12:30) – £2.15
  • Afternoon session (12:30 – 3:30) – £12.90
  • Snack payment – 25p per session – the children can choose from a selection of fresh fruit, vegetables, toast, bread, etc and we make a separate charge to cover this cost. This is a voluntary donation for Free Education Entitlement Sessions.

Acorns Helmdon-46 Acorns Helmdon-125







Fees continue to be payable if a child is absent for a short time period (with or without notice). In cases of prolonged absence, parents should consult the Setting Manager about fee payment. Each child’s attendance at the pre-school is conditional upon the continued payment of any outstanding fees. Six weeks’ notice of any change to your child’s hours is required by the Pre-School.

You will receive an invoice in September, January and April and may pay in three installments over a two-term period or in full by cheque, cash or bank transfer. If you wish to make alternative payment arrangements you should contact the Setting Manager.

You may also be able to pay using a childcare voucher scheme run by your employers. This is a tax efficient method so do ask your employer if this is available to you. In addition, parents may claim extra tax credits as soon as they start paying childcare costs for the amounts that are actually paid. Contact the Tax Credit Office on 0845 300 3900 or see for more information.