It has emerged that Minister for Children Katherine Zappone was alerted to concerns regarding standards of care at the Hyde & Seek Childcare company more than one year ago.

Correspondence obtained by Fianna Fáil TD Anne Rabbitte shows Minister Zappone received a copy of a complaint forwarded to the Child and Family Agency Tusla from a parent regarding the Hyde & Seek crèche at Glasnevin on Dublin's northside.

Anne Rabbitte TD, Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Children

The new purpose built facility operated for 14 months without registration.

In July, owner of the Hyde & Seek company Anne Davy stepped aside from frontline childcare following an RTÉ Investigates documentary 'Crèches, Behind Closed Doors'.

At the time, speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Ms Zappone said that she was very concerned that this could happen, despite the improved standards and regulations for the childcare sector.

"I felt deeply shocked and appalled to see the children being treated in this way," Ms Zappone said. 

It revealed concerning practices at its crèches, including children being held down at sleep time and being left in highchairs and bouncers for prolonged periods of time.

The complaint from the parent, which detailed a series of issues with child-to-staff ratios and other safety concerns, was first shared with the Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe, who subsequently forwarded it to Minister Zappone.

Minister Zappone acknowledged the crèche was not registered with Tusla, but said it would be inappropriate for her to interfere in the agency's ongoing investigations.

Separately, a garda investigation into issues raised in the RTÉ programme is also under way.