Dalmellington's new Early Childhood Centre (ECC) was officially opened this week at a special ceremony.

Local representatives and special guests took a tour of the new facility, which provides 32 early learning and childcare places for children aged three to five years.

Councillor Elaine Cowan, the Council’s Spokesperson for Education, and Children and Young People, officially carried out the opening and then unveiled a plaque, designed by the council’s Graphic Design intern Rachel Wherry, with Ada and Charlotte from the ECC to mark the special occasion.

Cumnock Chronicle: CJ and Daisy present gifts to Cllr CowanCJ and Daisy present gifts to Cllr Cowan (Image: East Ayrshire Council)

The children then performed ‘The Three Craws’ and nursery rhymes, including 'Incy Wincy Spider' and 'Wind the Bobbin Up'.

The ECC includes a large open playroom, parent/ multi-purpose room and kitchen facilities, with laundry facilities included.

There is also direct access from the ECC to an outdoor play area that has been cleverly designed to improve indoor/ outdoor integrated learning.

Head Teacher Fiona Greig said: “The official opening of our Early Childhood Centre was a wonderful celebration of our community and of course our children, who are at the heart of everything we do.

“I would like to thank everyone who attended the official opening and made it such a special day.”

Cumnock Chronicle: Cllr Cowan with Ada and CharlotteCllr Cowan with Ada and Charlotte (Image: East Ayrshire Council)

Councillor Elaine Cowan was joined at the official opening by the Leader of the Council - Councillor Douglas Reid, Provost Jim Todd, Councillor Maureen McKay, Allan Dorans, MP, local members Councillors Elaine Stewart and Drew Filson, Dr David Lewis and Linda McAulay-Griffiths, Chief Education Officer and Head of Schools.

Cllr Cowan said: “The official opening of Dalmellington Early Childhood Centre was a wonderful celebration. I was honoured to perform the official opening by unveiling a plaque with children from the ECC.

“Early learning and childcare is a cornerstone for closing the poverty related attainment gap between our most and least advantaged children. That is why since 2012, we have invested over £231m in the learning estate opening new and updated Early Childhood Centres across East Ayrshire.

“This project was successfully completed by our delivery team and I would like to take this opportunity to thank the team and our contactor the Wernick Group.”