London is the richest region in the UK, but nearly a quarter of its children live in poverty. Just 63.3 per cent of mothers with dependent children are employed in London in 2013, compared with 72.9 per cent in the rest of the UK. The state of childcare provision in the capital is a major cause of these economic paradoxes. Childcare for the under-fives is 28 per cent more expensive than the British average. There are also major gaps in provision for all types of childcare, but they are particularly acute for those who work outside normal office hours or irregularly.
The Family and Childcare Trust’s London Childcare Report is its most detailed study to date on childcare in the capital, analysing childcare provision and costs, free childcare places, and whether London boroughs are meeting the childcare needs of working parents.