About us

A brief history of
Red Bus Nursery

Our first setting in Coombe Dingle opened in 2011, with our second setting based in Downend following soon after in 2015. Both are large, interesting buildings full of history that have been transformed into exciting areas for learning and play. Both nurseries have been rated OUTSTANDING in their latest Ofsted reports. Our third setting based in Flax Bourton is currently being renovated and is due to open in 2022.

Our settings are staffed by over 150 people, all passionate about what they do. Our team has a cumulative 374 years of experience, and all together our settings are large enough to provide childcare to over 250 children a day across Bristol. That’s a lot of big numbers - but with such spacious rooms and a supportive management hierarchy in place, each unit can almost feel like its own smaller nursery!


Red Bus Christmas Party 2018
Downend Red Bus Curiosity Room

The Red Bus Approach

Our investment in the settings never stops, with new resources such as our Curiosity Room, Library, Yurt and extensive gardens introduced in the last year.

We invest in our staff as well as our buildings, ensuring everyone can achieve career satisfaction - whether that's job progression, qualifications, a supportive team or making a difference to children.

The Red Bus approach encompasses safeguarding, health and wellbeing, learning and development – everything that makes us, us! We are dedicated to creating a journey that is safe, exciting and individual to each child, supporting them from their earliest milestones all the way to starting school.

Why work for us?

Competitive Pay
We don’t base our salaries on minimum wage or age limits. We look at each person on an individual basis, and if you have a Level 3 qualification or higher you’ll be paid a rate based on that as well as your experience.

Higher Education Allowance 
If you've completed a higher level, relevant qualification - for example, a degree in Early Years - you're entitled to an allowance, added to your pay across the year. 

Career Progression
We want the best, so we can keep the best. That’s why we always advertise management roles internally first, and support any staff who want to progress up the ladder.

Discounted Childcare
If you’re looking to get back to work after starting a family, we’re here to help make it as easy as possible. If you want to bring yoru child to Red Bus too, we offer a staff discount on our fees.

Free Uniform
We know how messy childcare can be… but that’s part of the fun, right? To help out we provide free Red Bus polo shirts to all staff, as well as hoodies for the colder weather. If you’re part of the management team you'll even get your job title on the back!

Health and Wellbeing Programme
We want to look after our children’s physical and mental health – and in order to do that, we make sure our staff are looked after too. You’ll have access to a 24/7 support line, counselling options, as well as advice on legal matters too.

Free Training
Our management team will create an individual training plan for you, offering courses that will help you be the best you can be! We use NoodleNow, a third party service full of personal and professional courses for you to choose from! We’ll work with you and your input - if there’s a particular skill you want to develop, we’ll help you get there.

Essential Courses
We want all our staff to feel comfortable, safe and prepared in their roles – that’s why we offer free First Aid, Manual Handling, and Safeguarding training courses as standard.

Holidays, Christmas and Bank Holidays
Everyone deserves time off. That’s why we always close for one week between Christmas and New Year, and never open on Bank Holidays. You also get a holiday allowance to take whenever you like!

Recommend a Friend Bonus
We know how powerful word-of-mouth is, and as a member of Red Bus you have a lot of power! If you recommend someone who joins our team permanently, you could be in for a cash bonus.

Events and Parties
A work/life balance is so important, and there’s nothing livelier than a Red Bus party! We throw a big bash every Christmas. It’s a chance to let our hair down, relax, and catch up with the team. There’s great food, great music, and it’s all free! 

Red Bus Conference
Our business has grown so much, with a Head Office team that helps our on-site staff with recruitment, finances and more. We never want you to feel out of touch, which is why we host annual Red Bus conferences. We all get together to talk about future plans and goals, any upcoming changes, and to celebrate our achievements!

Staff Awards
The conference is also where we host the Red Bus Staff awards. Our staff nominate people in their team who really deserve the shout out, and the management have input too. There are lots of different categories and we love celebrating our amazing staff! 

Pension Scheme
it’s always good to plan for the future. If you enroll in our workplace pension scheme, Red Bus will contribute an amount alongside yours.

Our HR app makes booking holiday, reading through documents, and keeping up to date with company news easy. It’s all available on a mobile app! 

Liz Red Bus Owner

Liz's Story
Starting the Red Bus Journey

As one of eight children and part of a large extended family, I have always been passionately interested in working with children. It wasn’t until I began search for childcare for my daughter Chloe that I became very disappointed with what was being offered in my locality. I was also surprised by the poor physical size and layout of many settings. Spurred on by my experience, I undertook more structured research in the market.

My vision took shape but I still needed an excellent setting. I took to the property market to find the ideal building and location. There was nothing in the existing marketplace, so we bought and renovated two superb buildings in Bristol and South Gloucestershire that entirely lend themselves to the creation of excellent facilities for children.

Last but not least, I recruit the best, most passionate practitioners. Together, as one team, we are creating a very special place for children – Red Bus Nursery and Pre-School, an environment that provides children with an excellent start on their journey through to school.

- Liz Hogarth, Owner