Child care gets a royal touch from Wick’s Nanny Annie

Anne Dolphin, 75, who is urging more people to volunteer their time in working with children
Anne Dolphin, 75, who is urging more people to volunteer their time in working with children

SHE has been a nanny for Saudi royalty and worked in opulent palaces and villas across the globe.

But now this retired professional nanny is turning her expertise with children to the playgrounds of Wick.

Anne was given a signed photograph from Pavarotti while tending to the children of some of the singer's friends in Italy

Anne was given a signed photograph from Pavarotti while tending to the children of some of the singer's friends in Italy

Anne Dolphin, 75, has had a 50-year career as a professional nanny, tending to the children of millionaires and mingling with the rich and famous, including Princess Margaret and late opera sensation Luciano Pavarotti.

But in recent weeks, Anne – better known as Nanny Annie – has been keeping a watchful gaze on children playing at the park near her home, in Phoenix Close.

Anne said: “Being with children is so natural with me. I just want to do something good with the children. I’ve been a nanny all my life and I just want to keep doing what I can to look after children.”

Anne heads to the park every Tuesday afternoon and runs her own series of play schemes for primary school-aged children.

I’ve been a nanny all my life and I just want to keep doing what I can to look after children.

Anne Dolphin, 75

Activities range from teaching children to make jewellery with dried pasta to planting seeds and colouring.

She says her aim is to provide a friendly, authoritative figure to protect young children from bad influences that could creep into the park.

“In the playground it’s very important that children learn social skills,” she said. “I’m always there in my uniform to make sure teens don’t be a bad influence to younger children.”

Anne, who has no children of her own, is encouraging other retired people to consider joining her community initiative and lend a watchful eye over children once a week.

She stressed all people would need to be vetted before working with children.

Anne is urging people keen to lend a hand to their community, to speak with the area’s voluntary service, Volunteer Action Arun and Chichester, to see what availabilities there are. For details, see: here.