Angie Owen - Manager


Diploma in Children and Young People’s Workforce (level 3) SENCo (Level 3), Safeguarding Officer, First Aider, Health & Safety Officer, Risk Assessment Officer, Food Safety officer


12 Years experience in childcare


Currently working towards Level 5 Diploma in Leadership

About Angie Owen
Hi, I’m Angie. I was born in Ilford in Essex and moved to West Drayton in Middlesex when I was 18 to be close to my work at Heathrow Airport. I worked for British Airways for 21 years working in the reservation centre, Terminal 1 check-in then spent the last 12 years as cabin crew on both short and long-haul. My last flight was in 2003 after which I was grounded as I was expecting my first child. I went on to have two more children in 2005 and then 2006. I left the airline in 2007 when my maternity leave finished. Between March 2008 and July 2008 my children, Shannon, Daniel and Matthew attended Tolleshunt D'Arcy Pre-school at the same time! I made the move back to Essex in 2000 moving to Chadwell Heath and then to Tiptree in 2004. During my maternity leave I became involved with the pre-school as the committee treasurer when my daughter joined in 2005. I become the administrator before qualifying in 2012 and then became a pre-school assistant before taking up the position of manager in 2013. My spare time is filled with running my three children to various activities. I am an FA qualified football coach and coach football on a Friday evening.

Holly Graham - Deputy Manager


Diploma in the Children & Young People's Workforce (Level 3).


Achieve Level 4 and qualify also to be the Pre-School Physical and Nutrician Co-ordinator (PaNCo)

About Holly Graham
Hi I'm Holly, I currently live in Maldon with my husband, two boys and a German Shepherd, Ruby. I’ve worked in childcare since 2009 after volunteering for a stay and play session at my sons' pre-school and never looked back! Whilst gaining my qualifications I worked as a Midday Assistant and First Aider at a primary school in Maldon, where I then became a part-time Teaching Assistant in EYFS Reception Class and joined Tolleshunt D'Arcy Pre-school in September 2014. I was proud to be part of EYFS for 4 years, 2 of which I worked with children with Special Educational Needs as a one to one support before leaving to take on the role of Deputy Manager full time here at the pre-school and am once again proud to be part of such an amazing, hard working team and setting. I thoroughly love working with children and seeing the transition they go through. It's the most challenging and rewarding job and of course keeps me on my toes as everyday is different! After my wheat and gluten intolerance was diagnosed aged 9, health and fitness has continued to play a big role in my daily life, whereby in my spare time I enjoy going to the gym three times a week, doing yoga and pilates, and spending time with my family in the great outdoors (I'm a passionate animal lover and a member of both the WWF and Essex Wildlife Trust). I love cooking, reading and when I can catching up on all my soaps!

Tracy Baker - Administrator

About Tracy Baker
Hi, I'm Tracy. I was born in Enfield, Middlesex and moved to Tolleshunt Major in 2001. I worked in Personnel since I was 17 and my last role was Personnel Director for a subsidiary of Thames Water. I left work to raise my two boys, Ross and Callum. I have been involved with our Pre-school since my eldest son joined when we moved to the area. I became the Committee Secretary in 2006 and became the Pre-school Administrator in 2007. I left in 2009 when my work as a Vice-Chair Governor at my son's special school in Chigwell took up more of my time. I was pleased when I had the opportunity to return to the pre-school in April 2016. In my spare time I enjoy watching my youngest son play hockey for the men's team at Maldon hockey club, going to a weekly SOSA dance class, and going to the cinema and eating out. My husband and I love travelling, especially long haul to exotic places. We started travelling when we met 30 years ago and there are still places on our bucket list which we intend to visit now our children are grown up! I am really happy to be back working as the Administrator and the Committee Secretary and part of a great team. I also enjoy spending time with the children when I am 'let out' the office!

Denise Dock - Pre-school Assistant


NNEB Diploma (Level 3)

About Denise Dock
Hi I’m Denise. I was born in Colchester and have lived in Tiptree for most of my life before moving to Tolleshunt Knights in 2006. I qualified in Nursery Nursing in 1992 and started full time in a private kindergarten in Great Horksley until 1998 when I left to my first child. I returned to work shortly afterwards and worked in Five Ways in Tiptree and also in the crèche at Colchester Leisure World. I left the working world again to have my second child in 2001. I took some time out to care for my two children before working for Age Concern between 2004 and 2006 when I left to have my third son. In 2008 I started working at Wheatland’s Nursery in Goldhanger, caring for 2-3 year olds, where I stayed for 5 years. After a short career break, when I helped my husband to establish his own business, I have returned to continue with childcare as a pre-school assistant where I am today.

Donna Dobson - Pre-school Assistant


Early Years Workforce Diploma (Level 3)

About Donna Dobson
My name is Donna Dobson and I started working at Tolleshunt D’Arcy Pre-school at the beginning of June 2015. I live in Tolleshunt Knights, where I have lived and grown up since I was five years old. Upon leaving school I worked in Barclays Bank for eighteen years, learning many roles within the bank including some of which were cashier, customer service team leader and Premier Banking. I left here to have my first child and have a son aged nine and a daughter aged six. I enjoy spending time with my family and supporting them in their activities such as football, swimming and horse riding. I have my own horse and enjoy this as a hobby with my daughter. I trained to be a florist for two years in evening school classes and I enjoy being creative with design and art. Before pre-school I worked for Asda in Tiptree part- time, for three and a half years, serving customers and providing assistance when needed. Working with children has always been an area I have been keen to do, I have a calm and caring manner and since being given the opportunity to work at Tolleshunt D’Arcy Pre-school, I have enjoyed working with the delightful children here and am looking forward to studying for the levels required to become a qualified pre-school assistant.

Penny Humphreys - Pre-school Assistant


Children & Young People's Workforce Diploma (Level 3)

About Penny Humphreys
Hi, my name is Penny and I’ve been working at Tolleshunt D’Arcy Preschool since September 2016. I am married with three children, two girls and a boy. I live in Tiptree but I was born in Birmingham however my family moved very soon after and after moving to a few different areas for my Dads work we finally settled permanently in Essex in 1987 when I was 8. I grew up in Heybridge and bought my first house just along the road from my parents house. I then moved to Maldon where I had my first daughter and moved to Tiptree just a few months after she was born. I have since moved a few times around the village. After taking my A levels I began working as a secretary for an estate agent and worked my way up to Personal Assistant and then became the manager of the admin centre when the company decided to centralise their administration work. I left this job after having my second child in 2011 to work part time at Asda and I was there for nearly seven years during which time I had my third and final child. I volunteered for a short time at Tolleshunt Knights Preschool and enrolled on a childcare course but was offered a permanent position at Tolleshunt Darcy Preschool where I completed my Level 2 qualification in childcare. Outside of work, I love spending time with my family and friends. I enjoy cooking, baking and reading. I also have a keen interest in health and fitness. I love working with the children, watching them grow and develop and hope to have many more happy years here at the Preschool.

Claire McNamara - Pre-school Assistant


Pre-school Practice Certificate (Level 2)

About Claire McNamara
Hello, my name is Claire McNamara. I was born and raised as an East End girl in Dagenham before moving to Chadwell Heath in1995 with my now husband, Andy. After studying Business and Finance at Havering College for 3 years, my working life began in 1994 in the Finance Department of a large cancer charity. From there I was promoted to Fundraising Secretary for East London and Essex and was based in Buckhurst Hill. In 1999 I was then promoted to Personal Assistant to the Director of Fundraising at Cancer Research UK, based in central London. In 2001, I returned to work after having my daughter Mia and began working as Personal Assistant to the Director of Corporate Integration at Cancer Research UK before deciding, in 2003 to leave the delights of train delays and central line commuting! My career in early years childcare began in 2004 after helping out voluntarily at my daughter's preschool in Chadwell Heath. I was then asked to join the team permanently and enjoyed 2 years there before my husband and I decided to up sticks from London life and move to Tiptree in 2006. After having my son Connor in 2006, the opportunity arose to join Tolleshunt Knights Preschool in 2007, where I enjoyed 9 happy years before deciding to change settings and join the lovely team at Tolleshunt D’Arcy Preschool in September 2016.

Lauren Atsma - Pre-school Assistant


Level 3 Diploma in Childcare & Education

About Lauren Atsma
Hi I’m Lauren, I live in Little Totham with my husband and daughter. Having left secondary school, I went to college and gained a level 3 in Childcare and Education. Whilst training I was a student in nurseries and schools and have worked with children and families ever since. I have worked in children’s centres and nurseries across Essex. I have continued my professional development by regularly attending paediatric first aid, safeguarding and any other courses necessary to support me and the children within my working role. Outside of work I enjoy being at home on the farm and seeing friends and family.