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Child Development

The Duty Health Visiting Team is available on Tel: 0118 9312111, Monday- Fridays, 9:00am- 4.30pm. For advice and support for under 5's in Reading. 

NHS Choices 

Your pregnancy and baby guide

Pregnancy Site

Visit Pregnancy UK - It's a site where parents, and parents to be can easily find help and advice for each week of their pregnancy. It is extremely popular and has a wealth of information for parents to be, and for parents who have recently had their child. The site provides a great resource, which has been carefully put together for visitors. For example, has a wide variety of tips to help women ensure that their lifestyle is as helpful as possible to deliver a healthy baby.


NHS Information Service for Parents

NHS - Information Service for Parents Get regular info and advice tailored to your baby’s age: sign up to receive emails and text messages covering all key pregnancy and baby topics. Our emails link to more than 100 videos, featuring experts giving advice, and real mums and dads sharing tips on how to cope. You can sign up whether you're pregnant, a dad-to-be or already a parent.

Health Start

Healthy Start helps you give your family the very best start in life

If you are pregnant or have a child under four years old you could get Healthy Start vouchers to help buy some basic foods. This important means-tested scheme provides vouchers to spend with local retailers. Pregnant women and children over one and under four years old can get one £3.10 voucher per week. Children under one year old can get two £3.10 vouchers (£6.20) per week.

To find out more visit - Healthy Start Website  (see link right of the screen)


Childs early years development checks

For a breakdown of checks that will be carried out during your baby’s first year please use the following link. NHS Choices - Your baby’s health and development checks


Development check at two - two and half years of age

At two to two-and-a-half years of age your child will have another health and development review. This is usually done by a nursery nurse or the health visitor, and may happen at your home, baby clinic, the children's centre, or at your child's nursery (if they are attending one).

They'll encourage you to talk about your child's progress and will help you with any concerns. You may be asked to fill in a short questionnaire about your baby's development.

It's best if both you and your partner are there. If your child attends an early years setting, such as a nursery or childminder, the review may be linked to your child's early years progress check at age two.

The review will cover:

  • general development, including movement, speech, social skills and behaviour, and hearing and vision
  • growth, healthy eating and keeping active
  • managing behaviour and encouraging good sleeping habits
  • toothbrushing and going to the dentist
  • Keeping your child safe
  • vaccinations


Coram Family and Childcare Trust

Family and Childcare Trust aims to make the UK a better place for families, through research, campaigning and information provision, and working with government, employers and parents to reduce pressures on family life. To find out more about childcare and childcare costs and funding available please visit their website.

Speech and Language

Children’s Speech & Language Therapy Service in Reading
The NHS speech and language therapy service for children in Reading is available from birth onwards. Speech and language therapists can offer support and advice about:

  • Your child’s understanding of language they hear
  • Their play and interaction with other adults and children
  • Their listening and attention skills
  • How your child is using language, words and sentences
  • How clear your child’s speech is
  • Other difficulties such as stammering and social skills

Parents can refer their child to a speech and language therapist through their GP or health visitor. Speech and language therapists are also available for discussion and advice at every Reading Children’s Centre at monthly drop-ins. To talk to your local speech and language therapist, please ask at your nearest children’s centre.

AFASIC England is working to support children and their parents, enabling them to overcome their speech and language difficulties. Being able to speak and communicate with other people is an essential life skill. For most children and young people learning to communicate comes easily. For some children and young people, however, it is a major challenge as they have a speech and language impairment. 

I CAN enquiry Service - Concerned about a child’s talking, listening and understanding? Are you looking for more information about speech, language and communication? I CAN has launched a new service to provide expert information to parents and practitioners about speech, language and communication. I CAN’s speech and language therapists can help - whether you would like to check communication milestones or find out how to support a child with a known speech, language and communication need. Parents and practitioners who have used the service say they have found it really useful to talk directly to a speech and language therapist and to gain information about speech, language and communication development. They have also appreciated receiving information about training, research and other organisations that can offer help and advice. Tel: 020 7843 2544 or email: to book your free and confidential call-back from a speech and language therapist. If you would prefer an email response to your questions please email your enquiry to Find out more about what this service can offer. As the I CAN Help Enquiry Service does not include meeting and assessing children, the service is unable to provide specific advice about a child or the level of provision they should have. I CAN is the children’s communication charity. 

Royal Berkshire NHS Trust has a Children's Speech and Language Therapy department that offers speech and language therapy services for children with a hearing loss, cleft lip and palate, voice disorders, and advice on managing auditory processing disorders. 


The Sensory Consortium Service

The Sensory Consortium Service is a specialist education support service for hearing impairment, visual impairment and multi-sensory impairment. We support, extend and enhance the educational opportunities and achievements of children and young people from 0-19 years with a hearing and/or visual impairment from diagnosis to entry into the workplace.

We are a joint arrangement between all Local Authorities in Berkshire:

  • Windsor and Maidenhead (host authority)
  • Bracknell Forest
  • Reading
  • Slough
  • West Berkshire
  • Wokingham

We are available to all families and schools within the six Local Authorities. Other agencies are welcome to contact us for directly purchased input.

For further information please visit our website: