Parents could be granted tax breaks to help with nursery costs, a new government proposal suggests.

Ministers are in discussions over plans which would make up to a third of childcare fees tax-deductible. This recommendation has been made in the hopes that more parents will return to work knowing that childcare is more affordable. If the proposition goes ahead, families could potentially save thousands of pounds a year.

Talks are also underway regarding lessening the restrictions faced by childminders, allowing them to care for larger numbers of children at once. Childminders are, on average, a much cheaper option for parents than day nurseries are.

Both sides of the coalition are concerned that high childcare fees prevent mothers from returning to work after having children.  According to research from the Daycare Trust, the average spent on childcare for 25 hours per week for a child under two is now £5,100 a year.

The proposals are thought to be being considered for consultation in the government “mid-term review” – a planned set piece of new policies intended to reinvigorate the Tory-Liberal Democrat administration in the New Year.