Our Staff

Here at Poppets we pride ourselves on having hugely dedicated, caring and highly qualified staff. We are confident that they are amongst the best in the county and would encourage you to visit the setting so that you can see them 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. Please take the time to have a look at their profiles below. 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 sleeping partners in a successful 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.

Katie Holloway - Poppet's Nursery Manager

Katie has an NNEB in childcare and is the setting’s Manager. She is also Behaviour Management and Health and Safety Officer. Katie has worked in childcare since 1999 and has been at this setting since Jan 14.  Katie is thrilled that under her management, the setting has achieved an ‘OFSTED Good’ in just under 18 months of Poppets taking over..

Katie’s little girl Amelia is also one of our regular ‘Poppet’s’ and loves being here with mum…

Little Known Fact: Katie has a fear of escalators…..


Debbie Greig - Poppet's Operations Manager

Debbie has a background in small business operations, finance and marketing. She is also Jude and David’s sister-in-law making ‘Poppets’ a family concern. Debbie is enjoying turning the business round and making it a flourishing nursery. She is looking forward to opening the next one!!!

Little Know Fact: Debbie has an extreme dislike of yoghurt & cream…


Michelle Pateman - Assistant Nursery Manager

Michelle has a Level 3 in childcare and is the setting’s Equality Named Coordinator. She has worked in childcare since 2010 and has been part of the setting’s team since then.  One of Michelle’s main roles is to ensure ‘good practice’ throughout the rooms and guide the Poppet’s team by the EYFS. This involves offering the children stimulating activities and experiences encouraging their individuality, social skills and educational progress.

Little known fact:  Shell would rather walk up a hundred flights of stairs then get in a lift.. but then she is super fit..


Rachel Magraw - 'Babes In The Wood' Room Leader

Rachel has a Level 3 in childcare and is the Outdoor Provision Officer. Rachel has worked in childcare since 2011 and has been part of the team here since then. Rachel likes to make close relationships with the children and is thrilled that the capacity in the ‘Babes in the Woods’ room has increased to a maximum of 12 and is fully booked till October

Little Known Fact: Rachel has an irrational dislike of raisins…

Hannah Walker - 'The Rainbow Room' Level 2 Practitioner - Term-Time

Hannah has completed a Level 2 in Childcare and after being a Nanny for a while, decided to start a family of her own. Now her son is at school Hannah has joined Poppets to further her career and is hoping to start her level 3 qualification very soon. Hannah has recently changed her hours to term-time only so she can spend quality time with Hayden, her son, and have that great work/home life balance…

Little Known Fact: Hannah has a fear of spiders….

Sarah Bleakley - 'Rising Stars' Level 3 Practitioner - Term-Time

Sarah became a member of the ‘Poppets’ team following a three month agency placement. Sarah did a great job and was so well liked by staff and children that we couldn’t let her go. Sarah has been a qualified level 3 practitioner for six years and brings an abundance of experience to the room helping the children to develop and grow. Sarah works term-time only so she can spend time with her own daughter, Sophia.

Georgia Elliott - Rising Stars - Level 3 Practitioner

Georgia comes from a primary school background and has also worked in nurseries before, gaining her Level 2 Learning & Support and her Level 3 Childcare.

Georgia is always full of energy and enjoys messy play even more than the children. Georgia is looking to achieve her Level 5 and is currently training to be Poppets SENCO.

Little known fact:   You could pay Georgia a £1,000,000.00 and she still wouldn’t drink a glass of milk.

Poppets Day Nursery

“If you can’t be there, we can”