Nanny to the stars shares her ultimate childcare tips

Crying child

One of the most famous so-called ‘supernannies’ in the world has spoken to the Daily Mail about what she thinks are the most important parts of parenthood – and it may not be easy reading for new mothers and fathers!

69-year-old Rachel Waddilove, who was speaking to the newspaper’s online Femail section, told an interviewer that the single most important thing parents must do is ensure their children do not become ‘kingpins’ within the family home.

Waddilove, who has famously provided live-in childcare guidance to celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow and Minnie Driver, spoke with passion about what she believes are parents ‘becoming much more fixated and children becoming the kingpin.’ She explained her exasperation over how so many mums and dads ‘fall about to make sure the little person has got everything they want, and that’s not really how it should be’.

The Exeter-based nanny, who has three children of her own and has confirmed that she has no plans to retire any time soon, spoke of the importance of laying down boundaries which children can learn to respect. Most vital of all, she says, is enforcing a strict routine when it comes to turning out the light: ‘It’s really important that children know that they have to stay in their beds. [Otherwise] you have children up at 5am, and by 8am everyone is knackered’.

New parents must have a social life, says Waddilove

Despite Waddilove extolling the benefits of having a clear structure when it comes to childcare, however, she is also keen to point out that parents cannot be afraid to enjoy a little flexibility in their own lives, if they wish to maximise both their and their children’s happiness. ‘You must have a life’, Waddilove explains, adding that mothers in particular should not ‘have a routine that’s so strict you have to be back at certain times or can’t go out…get out and see other people’.

With the busy modern world full of so many competing demands, being a successful parent can sometimes feel like the most difficult job of all. However, with the assistance of expert private house staff like Waddilove, mothers and fathers can get the help they need to balance their personal and professional responsibilities, and be able to truly appreciate the most rewarding experience of their lives.

Image Credit: Ellyn.

Would you take £50,000 for being the nanny in a haunted house?


If you speak to any nannies or other household domestic staff about what they think is the most challenging part of their job, they may provide any number of answers: meeting high expectations, juggling responsibilities and impeccable time management are all things that successful household workers need to become experts at.

It is unlikely, however, that constantly being bothered by ghosts would rank very highly on the list of most nannies’ complaints. Nevertheless, this is exactly the reason why a family based in the Scottish Borders are desperately struggling to fill the otherwise attractive vacancy in their household – a job which is now worth £50,000 to the successful applicant.

This bizarre story – which has been reported on by a number of media outlets, including the Telegraph – came to light when the family in question advertised the role online. After it was noticed that the listing offered a surprisingly high level of remuneration, the mother of the two children who require looking after felt compelled to explain the situation: ‘Five nannies have left the role in the last year, each citing supernatural incidents as the reason, including strange noises, broken glass and furniture moving’, she said.

Family ‘Happy to pay above the asking rate’

The stories surrounding the supposedly haunted house have inevitably led to questions over why the family continue to live in the property, but the parents remain defiant despite their unenviable record at retaining nannies, explaining how their home is ‘lovely, spacious [and] historic…with spectacular views’.

Insistent that the family themselves have not been on the receiving end of any nasty supernatural surprises in their almost 10 years of living there, the mother added that she understood why securing a long-term employee has been difficult, and that the family is ‘happy to pay above the asking rate, and feel it’s important to be as up-front as possible’.

The job involves looking after a five and seven-year-old pair of siblings and, at the time of writing, is (unsurprisingly) still open to applicants!

Image Credit: Jordi Carrasco