Preschools and Nurseries
When your child is 2 and a half you may want to enrol them in a preschool, these provide early years education until your child is ready to go to a state or private nursery or primary school. They are normally only open during term time, so if you are looking for childcare you may also need to look for a childminder, nanny or consider a day nursery.
Take a look at the Preschool learning alliance which is a leading educational charity specialising in the early years. The government website also provides lots of information on your local nursery and preschools and what to look for.