Our Team

Learn a bit about our staff



Luke was closely involved in the whole 3-year process that led to the opening of Riverside Cottage. When his Mum died, he took a year out from his degree course in horticulture to help keep the nursery open, taking over the manager's role while switching his University course to Childhood Practice. Luke has grown in the role and become a rising star in the childcare profession. He lectures at The University of Edinburgh and is invited to speak at seminars and conferences at home and abroad.



Luke has a keen interest in sustainability and also in children's geographies (exploring the ways children interact with and make meaning in their environments).



Nursery Owner

Addi is the owner of Riverside Cottage Nursery. He and partner Sharon Coyle opened the nursery in 2011, and Sharon sadly passed away shortly after. Addi has handed over the day-to-day management of Riverside to Luke and is now responsible for administration and payroll.


Addi is a former paramedic and has ensured that all staff are suitably trained for emergencies. 

Carol Ann

Early Years Practitioner

Carol Ann has two children of her own, she lives locally and has a wealth of experience in childcare. She is a long-standing team member, loves outdoor learning and brings an incredible warmth to our unique setting.



Carol Ann is researching and bringing knowledge of ecological story-telling and outdoor literacies. This involves telling and creating stories outdoors with the children, bringing the natural resources and environment into the experience.


Early Years Practitioner

Laura is a mum, has two children of her own and lives locally. Laura first came to Riverside on placement, while doing her play leader course. She has been a big hit with the children and staff because she's a big kid herself and full of energy.



Laura is a great believer in sustainability and works with the children to repair, repurpose and recycle the resources around us. She brings this passion and her ideas into all areas of the nursery and supports the other adults in this.


Early Years Practitioner

Sarah has worked in childcare for 14 years and has held management-level posts during this time. Sarah has three of her own children and lives locally with her family. The team relies on Sarah for her warmth and mothering qualities.



Sarah is a huge advocate of our child-led ethos after seeing this missing while working in other nurseries. She brings a children's rights perspective to all areas of the nursery. Sarah is also finding ways to enhance parent engagement - helping us connect more strongly with families and the wider community.


Early Years Practitioner

Sarah-Jane initially came to Riverside as a student and enjoyed her placement here so much that she never left! Today, she is a confident practitioner with a gentle nature, a calm voice and is great with the children.



Throughout her time at Riverside, Sarah-Jane has become a strong believer in children not being confined by cleanliness standards or adult restrictions on mess or dirt. She is currently exploring the affordances of natural materials and how children engage with these in their play.


Modern Apprentice

Chelsea joined us in August and is our modern apprentice through Carousel. She is studying for a childcare qualification and is enjoying the outdoors here!


Early Years Practitioner

Sonja has a wealth of experience in childcare and education, with a Masters degree in education and is a new mum herself. She brings lots to Riverside as she is trained as a sex and relationship educator, playgroup worker and youth worker. She also teaches yoga and speaks fluent English and German. 


Sonja brings so much to us; the children enjoy learning German words and phrases and participating in outdoor yoga. Sonja also runs adult yoga sessions here on the weekends - look out for our events on Facebook!


Early Years Practitioner


Jenny is our newest team member and started in May 2018. She is currently earning her degree in Childhood Studies at the University of the West of Scotland. 



Jenny is interested in looking at how our children live in and interact with their environment, understanding their growing skills. At the moment she is exploring outdoor cooking, foraging, natural tools and more!



Early Years Practitioner

Claire is another long-standing team member with excellent experience, which is very much valued here.  Claire is a Mum and has a calming influence on the children and staff - and has a great sense of humour, too.



After supporting the children's interests with a recent project about bees, Claire is now our bee expert - developing our environment and everyone's knowledge.


School Pick Up

Kirsteen lives locally and is responsible for collecting and dropping off our children at their local schools/school nurseries. She is also a mum of five.


Marketing & Communications

Lisa is the longest-serving staff member here at Riverside. Her background is in marketing and communications and her son attended Riverside.



Lisa organises our parent comms and marketing. She makes sure we issue newsletters, host events and runs our Facebook page amongst many other tasks.



Huntley joined the team six years ago at only 8 weeks old and he has self-assumed the role of security. His gentle nature means he's pretty inefficient but we love him anyway.

01506 650583

9 Riverside Lea, Blackburn, Bathgate, West Lothian,  EH47 7EL, UK

©2018 by Riverside Cottage Nursery