Finding and choosing childcare

Registered childminders

Childminders look after children in their own home. They can register with Ofsted as individuals or be registered with a childminder agency. All childminder agencies must be registered with Ofsted.


Childminders offer early education and childcare at weekday times when parents may be working. Most are flexible and will also offer early mornings, evenings, school holidays, and sometimes weekends and nights.

Childminders must be registered with Ofsted or a registered agency if they:

  • look after children under the age of 8
  • look after them for more than 2 hours a day
  • look after them in their own home
  • get paid to look after them – including payment in kind

Childminder agencies

A childminder can be registered with a childminder agency. The agency carries out quality checks on the childminder, which means the childminder doesn't have be registered with Ofsted.

The childminder agency may provide its childminders with support services such as marketing, training and help with administration.

Find a childminder

You can search for a childminder in Thurrock and check if they are approved by using: