Essex Mum Awards – Voting

Vote now for the people, places and things that make your life as a parent in Essex that
bit easier! Take a look at Essex Mums Love… for last year’s winners.

Classes and Groups

Events & Days Out

People, Shops and Services


  1. Big shout out for Chrissy at Groovy Baby for fabulous customer service and stocking the coolest of kiddie’s clothing 😍

  2. The Princess Emporium always go above and beyond. They put on the most breathtaking parties and events & even through lookdown they have entertained children all over and created some super special memories that everyone will cherish. There really is no other perfectly presented, professional, talented and beautiful ladies than Eleanor and her princesses.

    Una x

  3. Highly recommend Helen with Baby Sensory in Braintree!! Works so hard for us and our babies. Lots of ideas and activities. Children love it and parents and grandparents thoroughly enjoy themselves.

  4. Lou Sutton Photography gets my vote. She’s amazing. We had a session with her when my daughter was 10 weeks old. She’s so professional and knows exactly how to make the babies at ease and get the best pictures. She’s a baby whisperer. I even brought along my nephews to get some photos of the cousins. She was super accommodating and we got some fantastic shots. Thank you Louise.

  5. Where is Rachael Clark’s nomination for the special mention to the community? Rachael has done so much for the local community away from Minnie’s bakery too.

  6. Catherine Leighfield at Sing and Sign Tendring has been my lifeline during lockdown. From face to face classes, Christmas specials, to online lessons, zoom chats and friendly WhatsApp groups that she facilitates – all have been incredible. I have made great friends and thanks to the content of her fabulous and fun classes, my 14 month old has recently been able to clearly sign when he was pain and where the pain was. I could get him treated really quickly. Looking forward to continuing our Sing and Sign Journey next term.

  7. Man behaving Dadly – brilliant stuffs, hilarious blog! Love the way he makes the stupid look even more stupid without even trying! Keep it up Dadly!

  8. Bex and Chris are such a fantastic couple. They run toybox so happily. The live to see kids in their shops also. Bex runs toy clubs to help mum n dads get birthday and Christmas toys for families that would struggle si much more if the couldn’t play weekly. Bex chris toybox is the best ne er to busy to help others. They even check on people they know is having a bad time. Out standing caring people.

  9. Minnie’s bakery are simply amazing, awesome creativity, always flexible and guaranteed the best cakes and cupcakes around!!

  10. Kellie Staples at Swim2Swim is an amazing swimming instructor. She connects with all the children making lessons safe and fun and giving the children a feeling of achievement.

  11. Painted Peppermint is amazing so well run and fantastic service and delivery and keep sakes are priceless what more could anyone ask for THANK YOU!

  12. Have been really impressed with the updated Chelmsford Museum, especially with regard to their children’s activities.

  13. All of the people and places I would like to vote for are not listed unfortunately, so I would say a huge thanks to places like CAPA Dance School are truly amazing and keep my oldest daughter fit, healthy, occupied and very Happy and me very much at ease.
    Also The Venue Boxing Gym who are a fantastic family to be a part of, my daughter loves to join in here and works so hard, they’re so welcoming and wonderful.
    These are my life savers- no understatement!!

  14. Please vote for swimmania what an absolute bunch of superstars. Not only are they a fantastic swim school, they have kept everyone entertained during lockdown giving daily online lessons and videos. Nothing is too much for them they simply love to teach and encourage our little people 💜

  15. witham community hub is terrible. does NOT deserve any votes. they beg for money from the community because their air conditioner is broken! as far as i was concerned, it was a run down shack for as much as it was used before lockdown!

  16. Kristy at Love laugh learning is amazing! The joy, happiness and laughter she brings to children and adults is amazing. My children love to watch her. She’s engaging, passionate, entertaining, fun and above all cares so much. Good luck Kristy. X

  17. I cannot recommend “Quackers” enough for entertaining your babies and pre-school children. Singing, dancing, puppets, bubbles and fun. Ami is an independent business owner and Quackers is her marvellous creation. She is a beautiful mother of two gorgeous girls and goes above and beyond to include your child in her class. Her classes were running in Leigh but since lockdown have gone online and make such a difference to our toddlers day. We cant wait for the next session and always have a lovely time 🙂 x x x

  18. Enchanted Parties have brought so much magic to my family and to friends, they have kept us going through lock down by recording beautiful messages from the princesses and hosting wonderful story times. They are all so talented and the children love them. I highly recommend them For parties, and their bedtime package is so cute!

  19. Quackers is amazing my family enjoy it so much and love the fact that during lockdown we can still be apart of it on zoom 3 times a week and enjoy the class Just like
    Being there

  20. An Elfs Wish at Nevendon was so much fun. Lots of effort was put in. The Elves were engaging and entertaining. You follow an Elfs journey through some wonderful sets, including the Snow Queen where you can help make it snow, to Mrs Santas workshop, as the Elf tries her hardest to earn her jingle. Highly recommend.

  21. Man Behaving Dadly – best blog
    Just wonderful. Funny, erudite, intelligent and honest. Not much that makes me laugh out loud.

    Brilliant comments too

  22. I couldn’t recommend Helen from baby sensory enough! Great classes that both baby and i loved! Looking forward to rejoining the classes this summer following the birth of my second child.

  23. The Essex Police museum is a fantastic experience for the kids….and an unexpected look around a Police car. Kids loved the experience.

  24. Silly Tilly, Tracey Pretty is fantastic. She keeps the children mesmerised, lots of interaction, such good fun she’s just perfect. Highly recommend

  25. Little Bubs Hornchurch – best baby group I’ve ever attended in my 11 years of being a mum. Emma is amazing, makes you feel special and takes an interest in every child. Not regimented like other groups and a great place for meeting other mums.

  26. Swim2Swim is one of the smaller Swim Schools in the area. We travel from Frinton-On-Sea to have our swim lessons here because they are absolutely fantastic with my little girl who was not at all confident In the water and has developed a true love for it since starting lessons with Lara, a fabulous, understanding and Inspiring teacher!

  27. Heidi Warmbold Fit4life is very dedicated and supportive in all she does for the fitness and well being for the Fit4life family. As well as bringing up two beautiful daughters, she runs a very good fitness and diet regimes in Thurrock.

  28. Shelley’s baby sensory class is the best class I have ever attended! She is amazing- so engaging and dedicated and my son loved all her classes.
    You are we the best! Thank you

  29. The bloke behind the Man Behaving Dadly blog is a brain-dead idiot. How his tripe is even up for an award is mystery. Anybody except him please!

  30. My Grandson loves Butterflies Club. He has made such progress there. The people who run it are amazing

  31. Baby sensory is the best class I have ever done, and I have done a lot! I think the main reason is because of Helen. She puts so much thought and imagination into every activity, I even find it mesmorising! Both my babies have loved every second of it, and I am so so sad that we are on the last few weeks before my youngest baby graduates from her class. We will never ever forget baby sensory, it has been one of the best times of my life with my babies 🙂 thank you so much Helen! Xxx

  32. Leanne Luton Photography.
    Professional, great with tiny toys and all round lovely lady. Beautiful photos and relaxed shoots.

  33. Leanne Luton Photography.
    Professional, great with tiny toys and all round lovely lady. Beautiful photos and relaxed shoots.

  34. Jemma Bucknole is the craziest, wackiest lovely person you’ll ever meet. She is a credit to Hartbeeps and I cant believe this is even a competition. Every baby and toddler needs to meet this amazing lady and she needs to win!!

  35. Little hero are a great charity they offer so much support to loads of families and provide activities to are children in a safe place
    They work so hard

  36. Happy little minds with Hayley is fantastic, she’s so calming and supportive and my little one loved her!
    Highly recommend this lovely lady.

  37. Littlebubs Hornchurch is such a lovely baby group. So welcoming and inclusive. Really missed our Thursday afternoon sessions when we left but now I’m there with baby number two and we love it!

  38. Used DNA Kids the children’s entertainers for my daughters birthday party. Absolutely amazing! Was stress free and my daughter had a fab time – completely deserve to win!

  39. Muddy Boots Forest Adventures is amazing. Not surprised this group has been nominated in so many categories. Learning in the great outdoors is going to be so popular in the future… in fact it is in great demand now!

  40. I can’t thank or recommend Natasha and Jerry-Ann at Empress Studio enough.

    Because of these incredible trainers I have found my love for excercise again.
    Their classes are really well thought out and a lot of fun. The biggest attraction and help for me was to be able to bring my daughter to the classes. Without this I wouldn’t have been able to attend. She has a great time dancing along to Zumba and playing with the other children at the classes.

    Natasha and Jerry-Ann have given me back some freedom and the excercise is doing wonders for my anxiety.

    They truly are Excercise Angels

  41. Baby sensory with helen and beth i have to say is the best class iv ever taken my girls too. I highly recommend The babys love them and its always a friendly welcoming atmosphere. The babys learn so much. Helen is the queen of baby sensory.

  42. Second steps day nursery is by far the best around. I have 3 special needs boys with complex conditions. They absolutely love the nursery, the care they receive is amazing, they go the extra mile and always try and make the child feel confident and happy

  43. I’m a bit confused as all the polls say they are closed but at the top it says September so if anyone can point me in the right direction for voting for a fantastic swim school I would be greatful.

    Jelly tots swim school is so fantastic and have given both my children the excellent life saving skills of water safety but had so much fun along the way. I have been in the pool with both my daughters from babies and it has been such an excellent way to bond and enjoy quality time together. The school offers a range of classes and many extras including adult exercise classes. Jane who is the lead swimming teacher is outstanding at her job and I’m sure doesn’t receive the credit she deserves in doing such a wonderful job with the children getting the best from them and individualising her teaching for each child that appears effortless and they all love her. Both my children have thrived from the high standard teaching. Well done and thank you.

  44. Love Helen Whiting at Baby Sendory!!!! Not done it for a few years but ALWAYS ALWAYS recommend her she is fantastic, bubbly, interacts and is super helpful and approachable. Miss you Helen and so do the boys.

  45. I have attended many of the Colchester learning clubs and so far my favourite has to be LeapAlong. I also encouraged a few of my friends to come along with their kids and they have also enrolled for this year coming! We couldn’t thank Charna enough for patience and great teaching skills

  46. Caitriona from retreat petite is an amazing advisor for baby massage, I have been with my youngest daughter but wish I had found her when I had my first two girls. She is funny and approachable and my little Ruby loves it. Would recommend this group to everyone. Great location too.

  47. Jo Cope is not only a fantastic photographer but is a inspiration to everyone. She gives up everything to help parents who have gone through their hardest time in losing a child.

  48. Helen Whiting has made such an impact on mine and my sons life. Since graduating from baby sensory 2 weeks ago i feel lost, tuesdays arent the same anymore and i feel genuinely sad that my son is too old for the class now. We have the best memories from our sessions with her and i will not hesitate to enroll my future babies onto her baby sensory class in the future! She is so enthusiastic and bubbly which has such a positive effect on the babies, they all are mesmorised by her. Its lovely to see.

  49. I would like to say thank you for wes and team at kidbusterz in markhams chase they are always welcoming and absolutely amazing with kids my daughter always talks about them and enjoys her time in the holiday club and there holiday clubs are amazing from bouncy castles to splash days to magic never a dull one ive been to thanks again for all you guys do.. beth

  50. My son has really enjoyed kidbusterz summer camp. I only booked him in for 3 days. He came home and wanted to go back so booked more for him. Defentley be sending him next year.

  51. We have been to Stubbers several times this year , including May Day Bank holiday and the school holidays camping weekend. Both events were well organised , value for money and really , really good fun. My daughter Kiera , aged 11 just loves every challenge the put in front of her, pathfinder in the tunnelling was her choice , BIG SMILE.

  52. Vote for Baby Sensory & Helen Whiting!!
    Absolutely fantastic sensory classes for babies up to 13 months.
    Has encouraged my daughter heaps and bounds with her development, and Helen is just simply fantastic with the children!
    I think majority of them prefer her to us the parents lol

  53. Cannot recommend Helen & Braintree Baby sensory enough. My baby has enjoyed every session from 5 weeks old now at 11 weeks still got many more enjoyable classes to go. X

  54. Absolutely love ruby and willow Leigh on sea.
    Such lovely friendly staff and Iv bought some stunning outfits for my daughter at such a reasonable prices.
    Love this shop always such a pleasure to visit!!!

  55. Kristy Kerry is a fantastic sing and sign teacher, highly recommend her for sing and sign. My son was very shy at the start of her classes with time and patients and her lovely smile. My son is coming out of his shell and loving the classes. He always smiles when he see Kristy.

  56. We love attending baby sensory classes in Braintree, to see my daughter’s beautiful smile during classes is just wonderful. Helen makes every class special (despite having to do the same class several times a day 5 days a week for different ages and locations!) Where high energy is needed she has it, where a calming atmosphere is needed she acheives it. You can see how much effort Helen puts into every class by the range of activities and number of resources she uses. It’s nice to see her gaining recognition for the excellent service she provides. I only wish I’d started classes earlier!!!

  57. Nicola, at Fun on the Farm Toddler Group at Barleylands, is absolutely fantastic. The children adore her and so do the mum’s!

  58. Jesters Kids Club is amazing. High quality childcare for working mums. So good to see them feature in 11 categories this year. So well deserved

  59. Highly recommend Amaze-Swim for swim school. Tracy and her team are totally dedicated to making their lessons fun but safe and the kids love it. Good luck everyone xx

  60. I would have been voting for PalmerSwim up until a week ago when my daughter broke her wrist, meaning she is unable to swim while she is in a cast. Palmer Swim will not even carry my daughters reaming swimming lessons over to the next term. Really disappointed with this, she was doing so well dispite having 3 disruptive boys in her class. I will mostly definitely not be returning and finding an alternative swimming instructor.

  61. My nephew attends the Music Man project. It is an amazing group and the members get so much pleasure and joy from it. David, the ‘Music Man’ is an incredible leader and teacher. There’s a huge range of activities for children but few groups and facilities for disabled people. Please vote for the Music Man project in their category.

  62. Share for children with disabilities is a brilliant club for children with disabilities, after school , Saturdays , and school holidays . It’s a life line for me as I have two daughters with special . The staff are friendly and very professional. Michelle the manager is so supportive. Well deserved of the award .

  63. Can we get a list sent out of all of the above? Whilst browsing through the lists to vote I realised how much goes on in Essex for little ones and parents. I would really like to see all of these lists published somewhere – perhaps they are already?

  64. I thought I would leave a comment for Palmerswim. My son went to his first lesson there but unfortunately he did not want to go in the pool and had a bit of a ‘meltdown’ he was so upset that he didn’t even get changed and we went home. I contacted palmerswim to explain and maybe to swap the lessons into my baby’s name.. I spoke to a lovely lady Carryn who was so helpful and kind she reassured me that they would do their utmost to get my son into the water and learn to swim. She offered him a free slot that they had so he could have a one to one session with her. Typically he got straight in and enjoyed the lesson! I thought it was so kind of her to offer to do this for my son, Carryn has a really special way of communicating with children to make them feel at ease. Thank you for your understanding x

  65. My granddaughters love fairytale tots Upminster. Thanks to Emily and Katie

    Good luck

    Rita callison

  66. Pandora images are amazing. I regularly travel from cornwall to Essex to have my kids photos taken. Absolutely amazing

  67. Cannot recommend Carryn Palmer of PALMERSWIM enough!!
    From little ones to big ones – so attentive, and they know their job!!
    Wouldn’t go anywhere else.

  68. Go Bananas has great friendly & helpful staff both in the centre & After School Club. The children have a great time & the recent upgrade has just made the place even better

  69. The only way is entertainment Christmas ball. Fantastic. Children get to meet all their favourite characters in one go. Meet Father Christmas. Part games and dancing etc etc…just brilliant. Deserves to win!!

  70. Amazing club we are not from south wooden ferres but travel here most weeks to train with these amazing people it’s a true honour to know Sam and Steve Powell and absolutely love their clubs both Are amazing role models for the kids and help them to become the best at what they want to achieve

  71. Carmen of baby sensory Colchester and tendering she puts 100% into all her classes, my son loved every class and he went from age of 4.5months upto age of 1years- he learnt so much and cried when he had to leave! Been to other classes and always went back to baby sensory. Offers other services such as parties which she did and all the kids loved it and parents!!

  72. Essex fit mums is fantastic o was able to get back in shape while having my baby with me Lucy is great she gets everyone moving and provides options to suit everyones ability

    1. There is a category for group for children with a disability – would it work to change the wording for that as I think it covers special needs groups too. Unless you were thinking of something else?

  73. Sport star holiday camp (leigh on sea)
    I have been so impressed with this club . It Is a fantastic and unique opportunity for children, where they get dedicated and supportive coaches whilst being given a wide and diverse variety of sports to enjoy during the day!
    It is an affordable club for parents and Jen that the children thoroughly enjoy!

  74. What an inspiration Kristy Kerry from Colchester Sing and Sign is I I have never seen anyone so happy,and visibly moved by what they do. A joy to watch and listen to I hope she goes a long way.

  75. What an inspiration Kristy Kerry from Colchester Sing and Sign is I I have never seen anyone so happy,and visibly moved by what they do. A joy to watch and listen to I hope she goes from strength to strength.

  76. All children are equal here they all absolutely adore it and the teachers well done jEsters keep it up

  77. Jesters all the way! My daughter and my grandson both love Jesters. Being a part of the Youth Theatre has given them so much self-confidence and a real desire to perform, plus they’ve made new friends along the way – and they have a huge amount of fun while they’re there too. It’s something to look forward to each week away from the stress of school and all that goes with being there. Hooray for Jesters!!!!

  78. Baby Sensory is awesome. Esp Helen at Baby Sensory Braintree. Wish I had known about this group with my first child

  79. Helen Whiting to win! She is amazing. Her baby sensory classes are such a fantastic way to bond with your child. It has definitely brought me and my son closer.. all thanks to Helen ❤

  80. Helen whiting makes every class tab baby Sensory Stisted fun. Not just for the babies but also for the Mums. Every week is brilliant! I’m truly sad for returning to work and missing classes. My Fridays won’t be the same. Thanks Helen ❤️

  81. Boogie woogies is an excellent baby group. My daughter loves it… especially the bubbles. Can’t keep her still! It is a Wednesday must do!

  82. Im a 1st time mum and nice to see the groups i attend has made the lists! Me and my son enjoy all the classes we do, the support from the leaders and advice and compnay from other mums is fantastic! Made some great friends along the way to!

  83. So many great choices!!! Feel lucky as a first time mummy to have such a choice of classes and support available to me. Has really helped me meet other mums

  84. I vote for stay and splash canvey island. Always safe clean and relaxed atmosphere. Friendly staff always updating on facebook of availability. Would highly recommend to anyone with young children.

  85. I vote for stay and splash canvey island. Always safe. Clean friendly staff and relaxed atmosphere. Would highly recommend always updating on facebook of spaces available

  86. Jo Cope is a friendly, outgoing lady who has a natural rapport with even the shyest child.
    She is well trained & produces a selection of unique photographs. Her underwater shots are
    visually stunning.

  87. A brilliant organisation which provides excellent outdoor activities. It takes place in lovely, safe natural surroundings. It covers a wide area & there is a large amount of carefully chosen equipment which has been adapted to provide stimulus for the children.

  88. all are great but i voted for the ones ive either heard good about or had personal experience

  89. great incentive for local businesses, only answered the ones where i know someone or something or who has been there

  90. Fairytale Tots is an innovative new group which is fun, educational, and different every week!

  91. Cannot recommend Helen & Braintree baby sensory highly enough!! I never thought I would be a ‘baby group’ person but I love her classes as much as my baby girl does.

    1. Baby Sensory with Helen is a must! I am on baby no2 & it is just as much fun the second time around. Baby Sensory itself is amazing & Helen takes it To another level with all her efforts she puts into every class. She is truly inspiring!!

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