T h e   K i n d e r   C r o f t   T e a m

Nursery Manager

Merlin Planterose

Having been educated at home on a tree nursery in the far north west highlands, I feel I benefited greatly from all the time I spent outdoors with my siblings. My childhood is made of memories of exploring the surrounding woodlands, building dens, lighting fires and foraging for food.

With that I learned a lot about my environment, the plants and animals in it and an inherent respect for its ecological systems, giving me a layman’s understanding of how ecosystems work. Since having my own two children, I can see how they flourish in the outdoors and witness first-hand the calming effect of being outside. We spend a lot of time outdoors and a day doesn’t go past without at least two hours of loose outdoor play. 

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Nursery Practitioner

Stephanie Martin


Working with children is my passion and I've had the privilege to have worked within the early childcare sector for over 11 years. As a qualified Forest School leader I have a love for outdoor learning with four years of forest school experience and knowledge.

I am enthusiastic to promote outdoor education and know

first-hand how it helps to grow children's abilities in a fun way, whilst also letting them be children.

I strongly believe that the best way to learn is through play.

Nursery Practitioner

Jo Marsh

Raised locally in the beautiful village of Ullapool I have fond memories from my childhood of playing freely outside, exploring with friends, climbing trees and sampling delights from the garden with my family. These lasting experiences have shaped my love of the outdoors. I feel strongly that outdoor education can be extremely effective, whether planned or spontaneous whilst also giving children ample time and space to learn and grow at their own pace, encouraging them to become more resilient, well rounded little people.

I have worked as a qualified practitioner with children for the last 10 years, with a particular affinity for teaching early years. My passion for forming relationships with individuals and their families, developing their strengths and natural interests and watching them thrive is what drives my enthusiasm. 


Nursery Practitioner

Emma Copestake

Having grown up in the wonderful community of Ullapool, I have always enjoyed a passion for the outdoors and exploring the natural environment. This is matched only by my love of working with children, so I am excited to be part of the great team at Kinder Croft to share these interests. The outdoor education at Kinder Croft provides the best opportunity to share this incredible natural space with the children and helps them to learn through play.


I believe that providing a safe and supportive environment enables children to explore their natural curiosities and I enjoy sharing this curiosity through play and learning together.


Assistant Nursery Practitioner

Rhiannon Van Muysen

My name is Rhiannon and I've been involved with Kinder Croft since its early beginnings, I am so happy to now be working on site with the children on a regular basis. I work as an artist but I'm also looking forward to embarking on an HNC in childhood practice to further my knowledge of Early Years Practice.


I am originally from Durness where much of my childhood was spent out and about on walks and adventures with friends. There was such freedom and a feeling that the landscape around us was ours to discover and explore. Since having my own two children I feel it important that they also grow up with a similar feeling of freedom and a sense of a connection to the natural world around them.


It is wonderful to be a part of Kinder Croft and to know that children local to Ullapool as well as my own children will be able to benefit from so much time exploring nature on their own terms and in turn learning more about themselves and the wider world.

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Merlin Planterose
Rhiannon Van Muysen

Co - Directors


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Andy Grant
Samuel Planterose
Rachel Grant
Dorian Braun
Martine Noble