The council representative attending our meeting is head of audit services from an external council, who specialise in giving advice to council operations (schools, leisure facilities etc). The chair of the nursery committee is a chartered accountant. Their stated aim is to try and fill the spaces available with children who qualify for the 'free' 15 hours slots, thus guaranteeing an income which match the operating costs. It may be their wish not to have clients like me.
I think what disappoints me most is the lack of introspection, the blaming of everyone but themselves for the situation. It competes locally with several other private nurseries, but has distinct advantages - no 'profit' motivation, no business taxation to pay, purpose built building, probably no rent or rates, economies of scale for food and supplies because of the school. And as a parent, these things act as positives when considering establishments. The childcare staff are excellent. In short, not many negatives at all, and it would be a shame if it shut.
I do wonder whether anyone has looked at those responsible for day to day operations.
From reading, it looks as though council decisions are generally only overturned if there is found to be an abuse of process. Of which, consultation with affected parties might be part. There was none here of course, and it might not be even necessary or relevant.
I am mindful of that West Wing episode where Toby gets sent to address a room of protesting malcontents, and spends his time talking to the police officer in situ rather than the baying mob. I think at some point he stands at his microphone and tells them they might be effective if they could only control their histrionics.