The soft-play haven for Little Buddies and Wigan parents alike

As a kid, the sight of a three-tier soft-play facility is about as thrilling as it gets. For a parent, the chance to put your feet up in a welcoming cafe serving top-quality coffee and homemade food is equally as appealing. Thankfully, Little Buddies Play Centre and Cafe offers both.
Little Buddies Play Centre & CafeLittle Buddies Play Centre & Cafe
Little Buddies Play Centre & Cafe

Opened in April 2017 by Bev Collier-Nelson, the centre is a massive hit, and one can see why. "It's crazy, but it's really good," said Bev, 43, from Wigan. "I'd always found that soft play centres were only for children, so our aim was to look after the kids but make sure that the cafe was good for the adults as well.

"I used to be a primary school teacher but I packed that in to spend time with my three children," said Bev of her decision to start Little Buddies. "When they were settled at school, I looked at opening a nursery but at the very last minute I changed my mind and went for this instead. It really was spur of the moment!"

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Now employing seven members of staff, Little Buddies prides itself on its personal touch, from the pre-school sessions to making a cuppa. Kathleen Ackers started working at Little Buddies in June having known Bev from school. "It's great, the children love coming in; you get to see them grow up. When they walk through the door they've got a big smile on their face.

Kathleen AckersKathleen Ackers
Kathleen Ackers

"We're a family-run business and we're like a big family," added Kathleen, 42, from Highfield. "Everybody's so lovely, it's a great place to work and there's always a brilliant atmosphere."

Bev continued: "We get to know our customers really well; we know most of the children and their parents by name. The parents come for a chat with us as much as the children come for a play - that's the kind of place I wanted."