STAFF at two Inverclyde nurseries have been assured their jobs are safe after the business was bought over.

Husband and wife team Bernie and Mariessa Devlin have sold Enchanted Forest Nurseries to Bertram Nursery Group for an undisclosed sum.

Whilst the couple will exit with immediate effect, assurances have been given that it will be 'business as usual' at the nurseries in Greenock and Inverkip, with the brand name being retained and all local staff remaining in their current posts.

Mariessa, pictured, said they now plan to spend more time with their family.

She said: "Bernie and I have thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of growing Enchanted Forest into the success it has become.

"Over the years, Enchanted Forest has nurtured, cared for and educated thousands of young children, as well as developed hundreds of staff to progress as individuals and in their careers.

"Our loyal and dedicated teams in Greenock and Inverkip have been the heartbeat of our nurseries locally and it has been a pleasure to work with them.

"Similarly, it has been hugely rewarding to assist so many local families over the years and to improve the outcomes for the children in our care.

"We have been committed to giving back to the local community and we have appreciated the support of the people and business communities in Inverclyde.

"We feel that now is the right time for us to focus on our own family and we are very much looking forward to that."

Bernie added: “We are especially pleased that Bertram Nursery Group, a company which shares our integrity and values, will now lead Enchanted Forest Nurseries into the future, particularly as they are already committed to, and investing in, the childcare sector across Scotland.”

Cary Rankin, managing director of Bertram Nursery Group, said it is an exciting new chapter for the business.

He said: "I would like to thank Mariessa and Bernie for making what was clearly a hard decision by handing over and entrusting Bertram Nursery Group with Enchanted Forest Nurseries.

"They move on to new beginnings, leaving something they have invested the last 13 years of their lives building while we are incredibly pleased to have found a business that clearly shares our own values and aspirations."