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Colchester Day Nursery

Where children are encouraged to discover, explore, and become confident learners throughout their nursery journey

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Ofsted Outstanding Provider


Outstanding Provider


Day Nurseries


Just Imagine Colchester

Day Nursery

Hawthorn Avenue
via Acacia Avenue

Opening Times:

Monday – Friday: 07:00 – 18:00

Drop-Off Directions & Parking

The nursery is located on Hawthorn Avenue via Acacia Avenue, and situated on the school grounds of Colchester Academy.

There is access to on-site parking for easy drop off/pick up. We also have a buggy park.

Call Us

Call Us 0330 333 1080

Nursery Facilities

Sensory Room

Our sensory room provides an environment in which children can experience special sound and visual effects, tactile experiences, vibration, use of aromas and music. Activities focus on brain stimulation and developing senses such as touch, sight, sound and smell, as well as the sense of wellbeing and relaxation.

Car Park

We have on-site parking available for easy access and convenience.

Buggy Store

We have a safe place for you to store your buggy at our nursery.

Nursery CCTV


We have CCTV installed within the nursery to ensure the safety and security of all our children and staff.

Meals & Snacks

We provide healthy meals and snacks as well as fresh water and milk. Our menus are seasonal and are certified by a children’s dietician ensuring the right balance of ingredients for the children. All dietary requirements are catered for by our professional chefs.

Outdoor Garden

Our outdoor space offers an environment to explore and develop and provides a place where imagination comes to life.

Fees & Availability

Nursery fees are dependent on the age of your child and your specific childcare requirements. Funding options are available, including the government’s 15 and 30 hours funded childcare, and we also accept the Government Tax Free Childcare Scheme and childcare vouchers.

To request pricing and availability, please call us or complete the request a call back form below.

How we learn at Just Imagine Day Nursery


  • Our baby room offers the perfect place to begin your child’s nursery journey
  • We offer as many settling in sessions as you and your child need to feel safe and happy in a new environment. This is the start of us building a long-standing relationship with your family, ensuring secure bonds between child and nursery team
  • We offer a stimulating environment and a variety of resources for our babies to explore, develop and discover through play
  • We promote sensory play from a very young age, helping children to make sense of the world by connecting what they see, hear, smell, touch and feel
  • In our reading corner the children have access to a library of books and stories, music, and rhymes introducing early literacy and communication skills
  • We promote movement and balance and focus on early wellbeing awareness and relaxation exercises.


  • Our toddler room is where our toddlers can thrive as they become more independent and curious
  • Our art room is where children get creative.  We have playdough, writing materials, arts, and crafts.  We allow them to express themselves, test ideas and follow instincts
  • In our library area we have a selection of age-appropriate reading resources to encourage communication and develop language and literacy skills
  • In our cosy room we have soft lighting for a relaxed atmosphere, and we continue to promote early wellbeing awareness and relaxation techniques to help our children understand their thoughts and feelings
  • We encourage independence and free thinking by allowing the children to choose and lead activities carefully guided by our practitioners
  • We promote physical creativity through music and movement which is key in helping to develop children’s fine motor skills


  • Our preschool environment supports ‘school readiness’ through a wide range of quality resources and equipment that promote all areas of the EYFS including maths and literacy
  • We embed maths and literacy into everyday routines providing opportunities for letter and number recognition
  • We give encouragement and praise to our children inspiring them to investigate and be curious of the world around them
  • We promote an inclusive environment where we take part in a variety of cultural and international celebrations
  • We continue to promote messy play in our preschool room sparking children’s creativity and interest in the arts
  • We work on whole body movements to develop large motor skills, co-ordination, balance and strength
  • We provide a dedicated space for children to learn in smaller groups, to focus on learning life skills, preparing the children for their next step into school

Outdoor Space

  • In our spacious garden children can wander, climb, splash, and run in our educationally designed outdoor learning area
  • Our garden is essential for healthy development and wellbeing and our outdoor equipment encourages physical development and challenges
  • Our outdoor space allows children to understand and take risks which helps to build their confidence, independence, and eagerness to learn
  • Whatever we do indoors can also be taken outside for children to enjoy and they take part in activities based on their interests and abilities
  • Our children are introduced to important life skills and encouraged to try new things through play and exploration, through activities such as role play, water play and investigative play
  • We promote a ‘grow your own’ initiative providing spaces in our garden for children to plant their own vegetables, herbs, plants, and flowers
  • We use natural materials such as sand and mud to promote discovery and imaginative play

Our Team

Abbie Smith

Joined: 2015

Hi, I’m Abbie, the Manager of Just Imagine Day Nursery – Colchester. I have been in childcare for over 18 years, working my way up from an Apprentice to Manager. Along the way I have gained a Level 3 qualification in Childcare & Education, as well as a Level 6 BA Degree in Childcare Studies. I have worked in a range of settings and have found my niche in Early Years.

I want to make a difference in childcare. The early years of a child’s life is pivotal to who they will become as an adult. Early interaction and intervention make all the difference in learning outcomes through the school years and beyond. I work tirelessly to improve outcomes for children through activities, resources, environments, and staff training.

My ambitions for the future are to carry on growing and developing the nursery to continually provide outstanding childcare.

I am always here to lend a listening ear to parents and to point them in the right direction if they need support. I am passionate about supporting all of our families in whatever capacity is needed.

Our Team

Our nursery has a lovely family feel which makes it a wonderful place for your child to grow, learn and play. We have a passionate team, who aim to create something special and different, ensuring all children are nurtured, cared for, and inspired with their individual needs in mind.

We have a dedicated senior team who support the nursery management in striving for delivering excellence by enriching home from home environments with an expertly trained team.

All staff complete comprehensive training, further developing their knowledge and understanding of children’s development, covering all key aspects in keeping children safe.

We can provide advice and support for all our families on a vast range of topics by pulling together our combined experience.

Food & Nutrition

Our delicious, healthy and nutritious food is sourced from trusted suppliers and prepared and cooked by our onsite chef. All dietary and religious needs are met.

Our experienced team would love to meet you and your little one, so book a visit today and we will show you everything our nursery has to offer during your own personal tour at a time to suit you.

Open Day

Join us at our next Open Day

Saturday 15th June, 9am-1pm

*Participating nurseries only

Call Back Request

If you would like us to give you a call back at a time which is more convenient for you, please fill in the form below.

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