THERE were celebrations for a Winwick businesswoman last week after her hugely popular French classes for children were highly commended at a national awards ceremony.

Les Petits Pois Fun French narrowly missed out on being named the most loved academic or creative activity for youngsters for the second year in a row but was highly commended by judges.

Eight years ago, Andrea Baker launched Les Petits Pois Fun French, teaching babies and children up to the age of eight a foreign language with classes full of original music, props and stories in Warrington and St Helens.

The successful 41-year-old’s business prospered during the Covid-19 pandemic and national lockdowns and Andrea was able to take on a franchisee two years ago in south Warrington with another due to start in Edinburgh next month.

Les Petits Pois Fun French was one of six finalists in the What’s On 4 Kids Activities Awards 2023, shortlisted in the most loved academic or creative activity category.

Messy Play was announced the winner of the category at a glittering awards night at the end of November.

Warrington Guardian: Andrea Baker has been running Les Petits Pois French Fun for eight yearsAndrea Baker has been running Les Petits Pois French Fun for eight years (Image: supplied)

Andrea said: “Each year, the national What's On 4 Kids Activities Awards rewards the very best in the children’s activity sector and I was delighted to have made the finals once again.

“This year was the biggest event to date with 320 guests and tens of thousands of parents and carers nominated and voting over the past few months.

“Last year, my little business Les Petits Pois Fun French came away as the highly commended most loved academic and creative activity and to receive this recognition again with so much competition was just incredible.

The awards show was a black tie event at Coombe Abbey in Coventry and Andrea enjoyed meeting fellow inspirational business owners and caught up with some activity leaders she met at last year’s event.

Andrea said: “I work so hard each week to create my unique classes and to engage babies and young children, opening their little minds to a new language, so to receive this badge of recognition really means so much.

“I want to thank everyone that took the time to vote.

“There are so many classes to choose from so the fact that so many people chose mine, and regularly tell me my classes are the best they attend and the highlight of their week, really makes the hard work worthwhile.”

She added: “Sometimes it’s easy to underestimate our role in the community, providing activities and fun classes for young children and their families, so this was a heart-warming reminder.

“Bringing my sessions to local families, schools and nurseries in St Helens, Wigan and Warrington, with the help of franchisee Beth in south Warrington, really is the best job ever.

“Next year will see children in Edinburgh benefiting from Les Petits Pois Fun French sessions as franchisee Laura launches her classes in January.

“It’s set to be a busy year!”