Meet the team at Tattenhall

Laura Yates - Owner



Laura has worked in Childcare for 15 years through pre-schools, nurseries, schools and Children Centres. She has a wealth of experience working with other professionals including health visitors, speech and language therapists and education specialists. In 2011 Laura took over Sandy Bears Tattenhall as Owner and since then has worked tirelessly to create an Outstanding Childcare setting (alongside having 2 children of her own!) Laura is thrilled to have expanded Sandy Bears to Cholmondeley where she can support a whole other network of families by creating another amazing provision. Laura works in the office focussing on all paperwork, parents queries and requests and staff’s continuing professional development. Laura is passionate about the settings ethos and is always available for parents and families.

Astone Richardson – Area Manager & Forest School Teacher


Astone has worked in Early Years for 9 years and is committed to being at the forefront of research and development in this area. Astone began working at Sandy Bears in 2011 after completing her English Degree and subsequently trained for her Early Years Teacher Status. Astone has worked closely with Laura to gain their Outstanding Ofsted report in Tattenhall in 2016 and in 2018 Astone opened Cholmondeley with Laura and is now based between both Tattenhall and Cholmondeley settings. Astone works in the rooms and the office, supporting families and developing staff practice and running training sessions. Astone is our Forest School Teacher and provides children with these weekly sessions and implements the ethos to all practitioners for their day to day activities 

Laura Silverwood - Deputy Manager


Laura has joined our Sandy Bears team in 2014 and since then has become a qualified Early Years Teacher following her Early Childhood Studies Degree at Chester University. 

Laura is a mum of one and works full time in our pre-school room, supporting the room leader and staff daily. Laura is a key worker to a group of children and also runs our Parents Committee team and Parent Support Groups.

Read my Key Worker Letter

Beckie Whitley – Big Bears Room Leader


Beckie joined the Sandy Bears team in 2012 and is based in the Big Bears Room. Beckie has achieved a BA (hons) in Early Childhood Studies at Chester University and has trained as a Health Care Play Specialist at the Countess of Chester Hospital. 

Beckie is passionate about our ethos and implements this within Big Bears daily, supporting staff in their knowledge too. Beckie is Key Worker to a group of children in Big Bears and is available to support all families too.

Read my Key Worker Letter

Molly Payne – Early Years Educator Level 3


Molly began working with Sandy Bears in November 2016. She has since completed her Level 3 and is an integral part of our team. 

Molly is Key Worker in our Big Bears room full time and has extensive knowledge of supporting children with additional needs from working with outside professionals in the last three years.

Read my Key Worker Letter

Gemma Jones – Early Years Educator Level 3


Gemma is a mother of 2 who joined us in January 2015. She completed her Level 3 in Early Years with us and now works in our Big Bears room as a Key Worker. 

Gemma loves all things creative so you will often find her in our art area making items with the children! 

Read my Key Worker Letter

Hasina Singh – Apprentice Level 3 Early Years Educator


Hasina began working for us in October 2018 after caring for twins in a private position. Hasina works mainly in our Big Bears room and is Key worker to a group of children. 

Hasina loves researching new ideas and developing her Early Years knowledge to ensure she is implementing the best practice in our setting. She often spends time in our Bear Cubs room too gaining experience for her Level 3. 

Emily Timms – Early Years Educator Level 2


Emily starting working for us at the end of 2017. She has completed her Level 2 with us and is now completing her Level 3. Whilst she is studying she works full time in our Big Bears room and is Key Worker to a group of children. 

She is also our Eco-Officer so helps the children learn how we can make an effort to look after our environment. 

Read my Key Worker Letter

Lauren Bell – Bear Cubs Room Leader


Lauren has worked in Early Years for 5 years and has developed her knowledge over this time with various Early Years courses before finally completing her Level 5 in Childcare in 2016. 

Over the last 5 years Lauren has completed a season at Camp America extending her knowledge of care for older children. Lauren now works in our Bear Cubs Room where she is continually developing the environment for the children who attend by keeping up to date with current Early Years movements. She is also a Key Worker to a group of children in Bear Cubs.  

Robyn Johns – Early Years Educator & SENCo


Robyn has worked at Sandy Bears since January 2018 and has since been studying for her Level 3. Robyn is currently taking on the role of SENCo with support from Astone and is completing lots of training to ensure her knowledge is developed. 

She currently works full time in Bear Cubs as a Key Worker and supports children in Big Bears as needed. 

Read my Key Worker Letter

Cara Ciesielski – Early Years Educator Level 3


 Cara has been working for us since November 2018 and has been involved in developing our Bear Cubs Room. 

Cara is a key worker to a group of children in Bear Cubs and has lots of knowledge on Safe Sleeping and Loose Parts that she uses to help the younger children settle and develop in our care. 

Read my Key Worker Letter