A DUDLEY nursery has been closed over concerns children "may be at risk of harm" following the death of a baby, Ofsted has said. 

Police launched a criminal investigation after a one-year-old boy died last month. 

The tot was being cared for at Fairytales Day Nursery when he collapsed at 3.20pm on December 9.

Ambulance crews rushed to the nursery in Bourne Street after receiving reports he had gone into cardiac arrest.

Despite attempts to resuscitate the boy, he died at the scene.

A post mortem has taken place but further tests will be conducted to establish the exact cause of death.

West Midlands Police say they are treating the death as "suspicious" and have arrested six women.

Three women – aged 20, 23 and 50 – were arrested on December 16 on suspicion of gross negligence manslaughter.

They were subsequently released on bail with strict conditions while enquiries continue.

A further three women – aged 51, 53 and 37 - were arrested on Wednesday (January 4).

Two were arrested on suspicion of corporate manslaughter and one on suspicion of gross negligence manslaughter.

A spokesperson for Ofsted said: "We suspended this nursery’s registration on 14 December because we believed children may be at risk of harm.

"Inspectors visited the nursery the following day and issued a welfare requirements notice, setting out a range of actions the nursery must take to make sure children are safe.

"We are supporting the police with their ongoing investigation".

In the Ofsted notice, concerns were raised about the “safeguarding and welfare requirements” at the nursery.

Inspectors have temporarily closed the nursery and made nine recommendations which included better training for staff. They also raised concerns that they were not informed of a change of manager at the nursery.

Staff were told to check sleeping babies more frequently, putting babies down to sleep in a safe way.

Inspectors said staff should have “appropriate qualifications, training skills and knowledge” with regards to sleeping children.

In one observation, the report said staff should “take all reasonable steps to ensure children in your care are not exposed to risks, paying particular attention to risks in the baby room.”

The nursery opened in 2003 and cared for children from as young as three months. It received a ‘Good’ Ofsted report last February.

The day before the boy’s death, staff at the nursery posted on Facebook celebrating a pay rise.

They wrote: "So the government is raising the wages for all staff. I am so happy for this as early years is low paid but hard work.

"I would pay my team the earth, they work so hard under stressful circumstances and are some of the best people I have had the pleasure to work with however with insurance, food, pensions, electricity, gas to name a few costs rising there is a serious lack of funding from the government to support us and parents.

"We must get proper funding to support parents in being able to access affordable, good childcare in this country.”

In 2019 nursery bosses were ordered to pay £3,000 after hygiene inspectors found mouse droppings in the kitchen.