Best Start children's centres offer services, activities and support for families with children under 5. They are open to all and you do not need an appointment to come along.
Most activities, apart from childcare, are either offered free or at a small cost.
What you will find in a children's centre
Every centre is unique and provides a wide range of services and activities you might need as a parent or carer with a baby or young child, for example:
- baby massage courses – call your nearest children’s centre for dates and to book a place
- stay and play sessions – see children’s centre timetables
- Chatterbox sessions (if you would like support/advice with your child’s speech or language development) – see chatterbox page
- 2 year old funding support – see children’s centre timetables
- baby weighing clinics – see health tab for dates/times
- midwife appointments – these can be held at a children’s centre near you, please ask your midwife
- breastfeeding support – see health tab for timetable
- early help – to make a referral for family support, complete and submit this early help referral form
Find out more about Croydon's early help partnership.
Croydon Best Start video
Aerodrome Children's Centre
Information and support is available on family relationships, parenting, managing your child's behaviour, baby massage courses, stay and play activities and lots more. All our sessions are free! Simply register at reception.
- Aerodrome Children's Centre courses – 2 September to 20 December 2019
- Aerodrome Children's Centre timetable – 2 September to 20 December 2019
- Friday coffee mornings at St George's church
020 8688 7710
Byron Children's Centre
Byron children’s centre overlooks the green fields of Coulsdon and offers a host of activities for families with under 5s, including courses such as baby signing, which aims to support your baby’s pre-verbal communication. Some activities at Byron are chargeable – more information is available on their timetable.
Off Stoneyfield Road
020 8763 6285
Crosfield Children's Centre
(covering Tunstall, Woodside and Malling Close children’s centres)
Crosfield Children’s Centre is the lead centre for Tunstall Nursery, Malling Close and Woodside children’s centres. Across the Crosfield Group we provide high quality family learning support, early learning and childcare services for local families.
- Crosfield Children's Centre term-time timetable
- Crosfield Children’s Centre – Now I’m Expecting – 9 November 2019 to 21 March 2020
- Croydon Council Gateway advice appointments
- The Early Days
Crosfield children's centre: view on Google Maps
Tunstall children's centre: view on Google Maps
Woodside children's centre: view on Google Maps
Malling close children's centre: view on Google Maps
020 8655 5655
Kensington Avenue Children's Centre
(covering Winterbourne, Ecclesbourne and Thornton Heath children’s centres)
Kensington Avenue provide a range of free services to all families with children from 0 to 5. We provide universal and targeted drop-in sessions, providing support on speech and language, behaviour and health advice, as well as courses on a range of topics including child development and school readiness and family learning.
We also have access points at Ecclesbourne Children’s Centre and Winterbourne Children’s Centre, as well as a number of outreach sessions in local libraries or community centres.
Kensington Avenue children's centre: view on Google Maps
Ecclesbourne children's centre: view on Google Maps
Winterbourne children's centre: view on Google Maps
020 8764 2923
New Addington Children's Centres
(covering Fairchildes and Castle Hill children’s centres, Good Shepherd hub and Wolsey hub)
- New Addington Children’s Centre timetable from 4 September 2019
- New Addington Children’s Centre courses from 4 September 2019
Main hub - Fairchildes Avenue
Fairchildes children's centre: view on Google Maps
Castle Hill children's centre: view on Google Maps
Good Shepherd children's centre: view on Google Maps
Wolsey children's centre: view on Google Maps
Purley Oaks Children's Centre
A wide range of activities are on offer providing opportunities to learn new skills and develop confidence whist having fun. Your child can make new friends as they play, while you may need advice on family matters, job training or childcare while having a coffee and a chat with others.
The aim of Purley Oaks Children’s Centre is for parents to have a fun and an enjoyable time, together, with their child, whilst trying out different activities in our well equipped family room. We have a creative area, role play area, books, construction, to name a few! We have an outside area with outdoor toys including sand and water areas. We also have the opportunity to use the school’s fantastic new garden area!
020 8325 4517
Selhurst Children's Centre
(covering Canterbury Road and Peppermint children’s centres)
- Selhurst Children's Centre term-time timetable
- Selhurst Children’s Centre – Now I’m Expecting – 9 November 2019 to 21 March 2020
- Croydon Council Gateway advice appointments
- The Early Days
Selhurst provides a nurturing, stimulating and challenging environment where all children and families are welcome and empowered to learn and achieve.
- Selhurst children's centre: view on Google Maps
- Canterbury children's centre: view on Google Maps
- Peppermint children's centre: view on Google Maps
020 8684 3777
Shirley Children's Centre
Shirley Children's Centre support parents and carers with young children so they enjoy raising their little ones. We are a one-stop shop for health and family matters, play and learning opportunities, training and job opportunities, or just drop by for coffee and a chat.
The centre is open 48 weeks of the year 8.30am to 4.30pm
- One to one support sessions
- Hello baby – every Monday
- Shirley Children’s Centre Timetable – 28 October to 24 December 2019
Woodlands Children's Centre
(Covering Sanderstead Children's centre)
Woodlands Children's Centre is within the grounds of Gilbert Scott Primary School in South Croydon. Since opening in September 2008 we have established a range of services to meet the needs of the local community. At Woodlands Children’s centre we have two family rooms equipped with a wide range of toys and resources for 0 to 5 year olds, both with canopied outdoor play areas. We also have a soft play room with a ball pool as well as a sensory room with bubble tubes. At Woodlands Children’s Centre we have trained staff who are able to offer 1:1 support for you and your family.
020 8916 0543
Tram: Gravel Hill tram stop