A St Albans nursery has raised thousands of pounds for a children’s charity after hosting a fundraising ball to celebrate its 10th birthday.

Julie O’Kelly and Bernadette Lee, owners of Ladybirds Nursery in Hill End Lane, hosted the Anniversary Ball to raise money for Hope and Homes for Children.

The evening marked the nursery’s first decade and past and present staff members and parents were invited along to help fundraise £3,049.32 during an evening of celebrations and an auction of promise.

On Wednesday, February 26 Julie and Bernadette handed over their cheque Lucy Hinchliffe, from the international charity working to ensure children have the chance to grow up in the love of a family.

Julie said: "Hope for Homes is a charity close to our heart and we wanted to take the opportunity to raise money towards a charity, which does amazing work towards keeping families together.

"We thought it would be good for the children to understand the importance of their own families and those less fortunate. "

The anniversary celebrations are very special for nursery owners, Julie and Bernadette, who were both state school teachers and decided to set up the nursery when they both had children. Julie has five children and Bernadette has three children.