I imagine the Government would have liked to make this pre-school education deal a lot more straightforward. Given enough money, you could set up a string of centres across the country, put the staff in and let them rip. Free pre-school education for all! No negotiations with providers, no ducking and diving over the intricacies of a free-20-hours system. You wouldn't even have to spend all that dough on the direct mail campaigns. A deal like that would no doubt promote itself.
And you would surely secure the undying devotion of the under-5s.
Consider what all the land and the buildings and the staff would cost. Consider that, and then consider what we already have, and the capital value of the infrastructure that makes it possible to offer free education for everyone from five years of age all the way to their late teens ('donations' excepted).
Certain readers of this blog would argue that there are superior alternatives to consider, and they make a valid case. I just wonder how things might turn out for the kids if we were starting today from scratch.