Funded childcare for 2 year olds

7. Hours and restrictions

If your family is eligible, we'll pay for up to 15 funded hours a week, for up to 38 weeks of the year.

The 38 weeks are divided into:

  • Spring Term (1 January – 31 March): 11 weeks at 15 hours per week (165 hours per term) 
  • Summer Term (1 April – 31 August): 13 weeks at 15 hours per week (195 hours per term) 
  • Autumn Term (1 September – 31 December): 14 weeks at 15 hours per week (210 hours per term)

You may have the option to 'stretch' your child's funded hours over more than 38 weeks. This would mean that your child would attend for less than 15 hours per week, but more than 38 weeks in the year. Please discuss this option with your chosen provider to see if this is something that they offer.

You can take the funded hours flexibly. For example, your child could attend for three hours a day over five days, or five hours a day for three days in a week, or they could take the offer over a number of two days. It is up to each provider to decide at what times of the day, and which days of the week the funded places are available. 

There are some rules that apply though, you can use: 

  • A maximum of 10 hours in one day 
  • A maximum of 15 hours over one week

You do not have to take up the full 15 hours.

When you speak with a childcare provider they will be able to explain these rules to you, or you can contact our Family Information Service.


The funded place can be taken over a lunch break, if this is offered by your provider. Your provider may offer a meal at an additional cost; however you should also have the choice to provide your own packed lunch.

Getting the hours you want

The provider will work with you to consider your child's needs, your preferred hours/days, and the sessions where they currently have vacancies. They will do their best to give you the hours you want, but it is their decision whether to offer you exactly what you want.

If after talking it through, the provider is unable to take your child at the times you want, you will need to find another provider.

Holidays and sickness

If your child is unwell, you are not able to claim back any funded hours that your child has been unable to attend due to illness. The funded hours will be used to keep your child's place open for their return. If your child is unwell and unable to attend for more than four weeks, please contact your provider to discuss your child's place.

If your child is unable to attend due to a family holiday, their funded hours will normally be used to keep their funded place open until they return. Alternatively, if you discuss your holiday with your childcare provider, you may be able to pay a retainer to keep your child’s place open. This may mean that your child can receive their funded hours later in the term. This would be at the discretion of your provider and they are under no obligation to offer this.


You should not be charged for the funded place. Lancashire County Council pays the provider directly for your child's funded place and if your child doesn't get any additional hours there should not be a registration fee.

If, however you choose to take up any additional hours or services from your provider, you will be charged accordingly for these and they may charge a registration fee. Please discuss this with your provider.

If you are using a provider that is open for more than 38 weeks, you will be charged for any additional time that your child attends.

Changes in circumstances

We will continue to fund the place until your child moves onto the universal funding the term after they turn three, they will keep their place even if your circumstances change and you wouldn't be eligible any more.


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Funded places for 2-year-olds

Play, learn and grow with a local nursery or childminder

Play, learn and grow with a local nursery or childminder.

Hear from our Lancashire providers about the benefits of a 2-year-old place.

Learn more about 2-year-old places