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Luton Borough Council

Free 15 hours early learning place for 3 and 4 year olds

Find out how to access 15 hours of free early learning for your three or four year old, and find out how to check if you are eligible for a free two year old place.

Free childcare for three and four year olds

All three and four year olds in Luton are entitled to up to 15 hours of free early learning and childcare per week.

We aim to offer all families with three and four year olds the hours they prefer at a provider of their choice, over a minimum of 38 weeks of the year.

When can my child get a free place?

Your child can get a free place from the term after their third birthday.

When can I use my free allowance?

You can take the full 15 hours when you want and how you want (subject to availability).

  • Spread your entitlement over two to five days per week
  • Split your 15 hours between two early years providers
  • Pay for extra childcare over and above the free 15 hours, if you need it

Which providers offer free places?

In Luton, the following types of providers offer free places:

How do I claim my free 15 hours?

  1. Contact Luton Family Information Service (see below) for a list of providers offering free places.
  2. Contact the provider(s) of your choice to see if they have spaces at the times/days you require.
  3. The provider will give you a form to complete to claim your 15 hours free early years place.

30 hours entitlement for three and four year olds


If you’re a working parent you could also be entitled to an additional 15 hours of free childcare per week; bringing the total up to 30 hours per week (in term time), or 1,140 hours per year.

Free childcare for two year olds (Time for 2s)

The Time for 2s scheme also enables some families to claim 15 hours of free early learning or education for their two-year-old children.

Find out more

For more information on free places, contact Luton Family Information Service.

© 2024 Luton Council, Town Hall, Luton LU1 2BQ