A HOMECARE specialist will celebrate its 30th year - with the help of some of its most loyal and longest-standing customers.

Helping Hands Home Care, which operates in Redditch and Bromsgrove, started out in Alcester but now has branches all over the country.

To commemorate the milestone, chairman Tim Lee visited two customers who have collectively received care from the company for nearly 40 years, and presented them with a token of appreciation.

Jean, a Helping Hands customer for 23 years, was visited by Tim, area manager Joanne Broderick and her visiting carer Yvonne Maddock.

After getting acquainted, Tim and Jean quickly realised they had much in common, including both starting their Helping Hands journey in 1996 - Tim joining his mum Mary in the business and Jean receiving her first few hours of visiting care.

Tim also visited Julie, another customer who has received both live-in and visiting care for the past 16 years.

Mandy, Julie’s visiting carer, said: “It’s been an absolute pleasure looking after Julie all these years.

"She’s a really wonderful lady and we have a great relationship. The bond we have developed means our visits are more like a catch-up with an old friend. I see first-hand the benefit she feels by having someone there to support her; it means the world to her that she can be independent at home.”

Tim Lee said: “We are absolutely thrilled to be celebrating our 30th year and I am so proud that we are now considered one of the nation’s leading providers in home care."

He added: “Since my mother, Mary Lee, began the company in 1989, we’ve worked tirelessly to ensure we provide only the very best care to enable people to live independently and with dignity in their own homes. This wouldn’t be possible without the dedication of our compassionate carers, who are the face of our business, and our support staff, who keep everything ticking over behind the scenes.

As a teacher for children with additional needs, Mary realised that there was a need for providers that could deliver quality care for people in their own home.

After initially setting up the business at her kitchen table, she went on to build the business from a small office in Alcester.