More than 200 people came to watch village stalwart Lyn Gurling cut the ribbon to officially open Lavenham’s new pre-school building.
The purpose-built nursery in Church Street accommodates 48 children and was constructed after a big fundraising drive to raise £500,000 to pay for it.
Pre-school manager Katherine Eves said staff were delighted with the turnout to the official opening last week.
“It was a great day,” she said. “We were overwhelmed by the number of people that turned up.
“To be honest, we never expected that many people to come along. But it was great that they did, and it went really well.
“Lyn was very moved to be asked to officially open the building.”
She said the new building would allow families greater flexibility with childcare in the future.
“We were previously based in the school’s dining hall and were only able to offer cover in the mornings, as we had to pack everything up by 11.15am, which, as you can imagine, was very difficult,” she explained.
“Now, we can open from 8am to 6pm. This gives parents a lot more choice over childcare and opens up more possibilities for them.”
She added: “It’s a spacious building with lots of light and a great layout. It was great to be able to get involved with the architect at an early stage over the layout.”
From start to finish, fundraising for the building took two years, with construction starting in March. It was ready for children to move in to in September.
As well as financial contributions from Suffolk County Council and Babergh District Council, many villagers staged a multitude of fundraising events.
This included the sale of a light-hearted naked calendar called Lavenham Bares All, with well-known individuals and companies agreeing to take part.