The Tidworth branch of Devizes Opportunity Centre opened three years ago and is a vital lifeline for parents living in villages close to Salisbury Plain.

It uses part of the Ashdown Family Centre, run by the NSPCC, and holds sessions on Tuesday and Thursday mornings.

It is registered to take up to ten children, but centre manager Betty Cox thinks demand will become much greater when thousands of servicemen and women move to the army camp in the town.

Tidworth is to become a super garrison and plans are being drawn up for new housing estates in the area.

Mrs Cox said: “It is very early days yet, but when all the new families arrive there is bound to be even more demand for our services and so we want to be part of the planning for health and education.”

The Tidworth nursery is run by outreach co-ordinator Jinette Peach who has worked at the opportunity centre for nearly five years.