A nursery has hit back at claims by Ofsted that it put children at risk.

Hainault Forest Community Nursery in Manford Way, Chigwell, was rated inadequate by Ofsted inspectors after a report raised concerns about the suitability of staff and safety of children.

It came after a female member of staff failed to disclose to the nursery that she had been involved in a police incident.

Michael Willis MBE, Ofsted co-ordinator at the nursery, said: "Because we were not told about it we were not able to get her suspended immediately.

“The actions of this staff member do not reflect the nursery and the children were never put in any danger at any time.

“Parents were informed today and the person in question is no longer employed here."

The nursery is appealing against the inadequate rating and disputes the claims that children’s safety was at risk.

He said: “We are fully disputing these claims but they will just ignore us. They don’t listen to you.”

The inspection in December was brought forward after concerns were raised about the member of staff in question.

The report also found the youngest children have very few opportunities to develop skills in regard to personal hygiene.

However, carers were praised for developing good relationships with the children, while ensuring their time at the nursery is enjoyable and the nursery’s good partnership with parents was highlighted.

The nursery will be monitored and inspected again within six months, in line with Ofsted policy.