A Burntwood-based nursery business has been given the Queen’s Award for Enterprise.
Busy Bees received the royal accolade, handed out in honour of the Queen’s 92nd birthday, for promoting opportunity and training for early years apprentices.
The company’s first nursery was opened in Lichfield in 1984 by six teachers who had become frustrated with the lack of good quality, flexible care available for their own children.
It now cares for 50,000 children across nearly 500 sites in the UK, Canada, Singapore, Malaysia and China.
Co-founder, Marg Randles OBE, said: “Receiving the Queen’s Award is the ultimate accolade recognising the commitment of our people. It reflects our drive to provide opportunities for passionate practitioners, unleashing their potential and allowing them to realise their dreams.
“It recognises that our success is down to helping the incredible people who help us to provide the best experiences for children.
“I’m fortunate to have had the opportunity to have a career doing something I love. Supporting others to follow their dream has a tremendous impact on the opportunities we provide for both staff and children.”
The company also operates BB Training Academy, offering management qualifications, apprenticeships and short courses for staff.
Fay Gibbin, CEO of BB Training Academy, said: “Training is an integral part of Busy Bees and is an essential part of creating a high performing, inclusive learning environment that values diversity.
“We believe helping people from disadvantaged backgrounds into successful working lives not only creates a dedicated, loyal and experienced workforce but enables us to deliver outstanding care to young children for working families.”
The organisation will be presented with the award by the Lord-Lieutenant of Staffordshire at their nursery in Burntwood, which will now fly the Queen’s Award flag. They will also attend a royal reception at Buckingham Palace later in the year.