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Nannies not being allowed to take babies on tube or bus - do you agree with this?

(28 Posts)
Ragtaggle Thu 21-Jul-05 15:07:11

Just interested. My nanny has two nanny friends who she sees on a daily basis and our children are all friends. I found out recently that I am the only parent of the three that allows their nanny to take her child on the tube and bus, One of the nannies hasn't been allowed to use either of these forms of transport for over a year - it's not just a response to the last few weeks. The justification is that the mother would 'never forgive herself' if something happened to her two year old when the child was with the nanny.

Until now, I've thought that this is very wrong. The other children have missed out on several fun trips my nanny has taken to local zoos, parks and museums and the like. Only allowing the nannies to walk (or sometimes takes a taxi) seems very restrictive - after all terrorist attacks and accidents could happen anywhere and you can't wrap them up in cotton wool can you? But I suppose today's evacuations have made me a little uneasy and I'm curious - would you let your nanny take your baby on the bus or tube in the current climate?

swiperfox Thu 21-Jul-05 15:09:38

Hi Ragtaggle - it's not quite the same but since 9/11 I'm too scared to tak dd or ds to London via train/tube/bus....anything!! I know you shouldn't let them get to you but I can't handle the risk and think i would be the same with a nanny - if not even more so!

motherinferior Thu 21-Jul-05 15:10:12

So they're not allowed to use trains but are allowed to use taxis? Do they have childseats for the taxis?

I think those mothers are displacing some very weird feelings of discomfort about leaving their children with someone else, to be honest.

Speaking as the mother of two children who have been ferried about everywhere by their childminder and other childminders, in cars (with suitable restraints), occasional buses, and so on...

Ragtaggle Thu 21-Jul-05 15:11:09

But what if you live in London like I do - tubes and buses are the main form of transport here. So if you can't use them then your children's experience of life is going to be very restricted...

motherinferior Thu 21-Jul-05 15:12:21

I do live in London, just a bit of it that doesn't have tubes. I take my kids on the tube when I can face the horror of public transport and two under-fives, we go on loads of buses...nah, I think they've got things madly out of proportion quite frankly.

compo Thu 21-Jul-05 15:13:23

totally ott imo

Easy Thu 21-Jul-05 15:13:50

My god, it's like putting them under a curfew.

I can't see it's a healthy attitude anywaay, how are they going to learn about life?

I can't see that the children are any more at risk with Nanny than with parent, and all it does is restrict Nanny's aability to join in with other nannies, take children on 'adventures'.

Perhaps I'm devil-may-care.

Wheres QueenOfQuotes on this one.

Ragtaggle Thu 21-Jul-05 15:14:46

That was a response to swiperfox but I do agree with you about the displacement theory motherinferior. I've often thought that it isn't fair to entrust your child to someone and then place all sorts of restrictions on them. This nanny has to ask permission to go on the most minor day trips - to the museum of childhood, for example. Until two weeks ago she was allowed on buses but the events of two weeks ago have put paid to that. I feel really sorry for her when my nanny goes off somewhere exciting with dd

Ragtaggle Thu 21-Jul-05 15:16:26

But what if you live in London like I do - tubes and buses are the main form of transport here. So if you can't use them then your children's experience of life is going to be very restricted...

acnebride Thu 21-Jul-05 15:17:06


IMO this restricts the nanny far too much in London. And I always loved tubes and buses when I was younger so I'm biased - remember with ecstasy my first trip to London on my own at age 11, when I caught a red double-decker all by myself to see my mum at her office.

I'm of the 'if your number's up' school. But this is not my children so if the nanny's prepared to put up with it, fair enough.

PrettyCandles Thu 21-Jul-05 15:19:26

Avoiding public transport now would be bowing down to the terrorists. If we avoid the tubes and buses because of what's happened then they are winning.

Generally speaking I would say we should continue to use public transport as normal.

But horrible as traveling on pt is with a buggy, it becomes particularly horrible now. I've been in an evacuation with dd in the buggy, all perfectly calm and safe, but nonetheless terrible, because you have to decide whether or not to abandon the buggy and carry the child - it's easier to get through crowds without the buggy, but what about keeping hold of the older child? My heart is bumping just remembering it.

So I would say it makes sense to avoid unnecessary journeys into town with buggies at the moment, but with children old enough to be easily controlled I would say to continue using pt as normal.

QueenOfQuotes Thu 21-Jul-05 15:19:28

"Wheres QueenOfQuotes on this one."

*******loooks round suspiciously and wonders why people are asking her where abouts*********

Flossam Thu 21-Jul-05 15:21:32

I'm really reluctant to take DS into central London with me. I know I shouldn't be but I am. I was hoping to go there today, but am still waiting for a delivery. I need to go into work to find out when I am working and request some shifts, but I will go alone tomorrow when DP is home. Too risky for me.

QueenOfQuotes Thu 21-Jul-05 15:23:50

but actually seen as tnough you asked - yes if I lived in London I would allow my nanny (if I could afford one) to take my children on the tube or bus, even in the current climate.

They're actually MUCH more likely to be hurt in a car accident than be injured by a bomb/terroist attack.

I'd like my children to be able to do/see as much as possibly.

Issymum Thu 21-Jul-05 15:35:29

Until I saw this thread, it had never occurred to me to place any restrictions on our nanny about travelling with the children on tubes and buses and I won't be doing so either. I'm much more concerned about car accidents and always get a slight clutching-in-the-stomach feeling when I see her drive off with them. I should add that she is a much much better driver than I am.

The only thing that concerns me is that they may get caught up in a massive, snarly mess with no available public transport, huge jams etc.. But our nanny is definitely capable enough to deal with that, otherwise I wouldn't have employed her.

<Thread hijack: MI: Great to see you again. How's it going?>

pablopatito Thu 21-Jul-05 15:36:13

Just to put some perspective on the risks of the tube:

"Britain's roads are dangerous places with over 3,000 people killed in a car crash every year and more than ten times that number suffering serious personal injury. Total casualties on UK roads exceed 300,000 with over 15 children killed or seriously hurt each day. The UK has a good record on safety with one of the lowest overall motor injury rates in Europe however incidents involving children in Britain come close to the top of the European league."


Azure Thu 21-Jul-05 15:47:04

I have no qualms with my nanny taking DS on the bus or tube, and am amazed to hear that other parents disallow this. I trust my nanny to take the same care with DS on public transport as she would when crossing the road with him. They were even on the tube today (to South Kensington and the Natural History Museum). Of course I'm anxious when there is an incident, but I would be if DH or my mother were there instead of the nanny.

jampots Thu 21-Jul-05 15:49:33

dont have a nanny but if I did I wouldnt allow her to take tube/bus into London either

Blondeinlondon Thu 21-Jul-05 15:51:11

Yes I would let a nanny take my baby on the tube or bus
I take him, he has been on the tube since about 3 weeks of age. I hate the bus as it's too slow and I'm one of those strange people who live in London and manage without a car

Anchovy Thu 21-Jul-05 16:33:27

I hadn't even thought of this as being something to be worried about. Hmmmm. Had a think about it - still not worried. DS's biggest treat in the world (he's 3.10) is going on either a tube or a train - a bus would be a close second. When he was younger I would construct a whole morning's entertainment out of going to the station, waiting and watching a few trains, going 4 stops up the line to Waterloo, having a cappuchino and coming back home again. DS thought that was pretty much the equivalent of a day at Disneyland (and as I have a season ticket it is free ). I would be very happy for our nanny to do this with both of them: they often use public transport. Completely agree with MI that its a displacement thing about leaving children - I think if you leave children with a nanny or childminder you also have to be happy to allow that person to take some personal responsibility for situations. Hell, I even "allow" my nanny to layer DD top to toe in every pink thing she owns so that she resembles a marsh mallow - her day, her call!

motherinferior Thu 21-Jul-05 16:40:02

Now that is permissive, Anchovy.

MarsLady Thu 21-Jul-05 16:44:23

I have to say that if they are not allowed to use public transport then the parents need to supply a car.

Bugsy2 Thu 21-Jul-05 16:57:43

ragtaggle, how do these nannies you are talking about get around? Do they have to walk everywhere. Statistically care journeys are much, much more dangerous than anything on the tube or bus.

binkie Thu 21-Jul-05 17:02:34

Hum, I think this is one of those things where everyone has their own comfort level.

So while I am a committed public transport user, by myself, and me-with-kids (we do the school run on the Tube and we are like gold-dust among the commuters), and nanny-with-kids - that is no doubt because it just isn't something that triggers my personal anxieties - and because the nanny we have now is very level-headed. But if I had a child who was stressed by crowds, or we had a nanny who I thought likely to lose her head in a crisis, then things would of course be different.

It's different from not wanting your child taken out of the house at all by their carer, which for me would be an alarm bell.

singersgirl Thu 21-Jul-05 18:26:24

My nannies were allowed to use the bus and tube as well as the car. If I trust someone enough to look after my children while I'm at work, surely I have to believe they're competent on public transport. Of course incidents like this make you worry about public transport generally, and, though I know it's illogical, I feel more reluctant to take the boys into London at the moment (because I'm still driving the car...), but I don't think that seemed to be the issue with the OP's friend.

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