Merseyside grandparents who look after their grandchildren this summer could be saving their families up to £1,500 per child.
The cost of summer childcare can reach £50 per child per day, with a wide range of specialist courses, sports camps, summer schools and day nurseries available across the region.
Examples include an activity camp in Childwall that charges upwards of £42 per day, a performing arts school where classes cost as much as £160 for four days, and a nursery in Formby that charges as much as £51 per child, per day.
Over the course of the six-week school break, that level of cost would mean parents facing childcare bills as high as £1,500 for each of their children – a figure way beyond the means of many local families.
Julie Waring, a family law partner at Morecrofts Solicitors, which has offices across Merseyside, said:
“Childcare costs are excessively high all year round, but when the school holidays arrive, the problem becomes much more acute for families with school age children.
“Paying as much as £50 per day for the care of each child is simply unfeasible for most working parents, especially if it comes on top of the cost of a summer holiday and other days out, so it’s no surprise that so many of us turn to grandparents to shoulder most, if not all, of the burden.
“Grandparents really are the heroes in these situations – putting aside their usual routines to help their children and look after their grandchildren, many of whom receive one-on-one attention in a familiar environment and the chance to make lots of lasting memories, all for a relatively small cost.
“Of course, not everybody is fortunate enough to have their parents around to help care for their children, a fact which further underlines the crucial role some grandparents are able to play during the summer and throughout the year.”