Merry Maids UK becomes official partner in aid of Alzheimer’s Society

Merry Maids have become official partners of Alzheimer’s Society.

We are thrilled to announce that Merry Maids has become an official charity partner in support of Alzheimer’s Society as of 2024.

This blog post has all the details…


What does the partnership mean?

We have named Alzheimer’s Society our charity of the year and have thus pledged to raise £10,000 to go towards their work throughout 2024.

As part of our longstanding commitment as Dementia Friends, last year, we raised over £4000 with our nationwide Forget Me Knot Challenge Campaign.

This year, we’re kicking it up a gear.

As official partners, we’re committed to supporting our staff and customers to have a better cleaning experience by training every Merry Maids cleaner across the UK in professional dementia support.

This makes us the only domestic cleaning company in the UK certified to provide accredited support to the over 800,000 people living with dementia in the UK.

The training will also help our maids to be better equipped to support our customers with specific needs and extra support, and our customers to feel ever more strongly that, with Merry Maids, they are in good hands.


What does dementia support mean to Merry Maids customers?

To Merry Maids customers like this woman from Croydon, our support means her father can maintain his independence:

“My Dad is 93 and has got a serious heart condition and dementia,” she says.

“After a long stay in hospital and living with us for four months, he wanted to live independently,”

“He reluctantly accepted help and within a couple of weeks was looking forward to his visits by Merry Maids and the good job of ‘wizard cleaning’ he says they do.”

“They are very caring and have a very soft spot for Dad,” she adds.

“Which makes my life as a carer easier.”

“Dad would never be without his Merry Maids, and they have made a huge difference to his enjoyment of life.”


What does dementia support mean to us?

As long-time supporters of Alzheimer’s Society, this partnership officially recognises Merry Maids UK’s commitment to supporting them and the people we serve living with dementia in our communities.

Vikki Donnachie, Merry Maids Brand Leader, says:

“We are thrilled to be working with Alzheimer’s Society again this year. The ability to offer further training to all our maids provides added support and peace of mind to both our customers and their families who are or have been affected by dementia.”

“At Merry Maids, our high levels of customer service and community engagement are what makes us different, and being able to support both our customers and Alzheimer’s Society is a real privilege.”


Aaliah Chik, Senior Marketing Executive for Merry Maids, adds:

“As many of our customers are facing dementia, to have this opportunity to take what we do for them to the next level by training our maids and further supporting Alzheimer’s Society is so exciting.”

“We have great things planned for this year. I’m looking forward to developing our work to better the people living with dementia in our communities.”


Meg Foxhall, Community Fundraiser of Alzheimer’s Society, says:

“On behalf of Alzheimer’s Society, I would like to thank Merry Maids. We’re so grateful for their support, which allows us to provide help and hope for everyone affected by dementia.”

“Dementia is the UK’s biggest killer,” she adds.

“Too many people face dementia alone. 1 in 3 people born today will develop dementia in their lifetime. We want everyone affected by dementia to know that whoever you are, whatever you’re going through, Alzheimer’s Society is here for you.”


Discover the value of a cleaner who cares

To learn more about Merry Maids UK and our work with Alzheimer’s Society, call 0800 021 3072.

If you or someone you know would benefit from a professional and compassionate, regular or one-off, home cleaning service from the dementia friends at Merry Maids UK, find your nearest Merry Maids business or book online today.

Merry Maids of Croydon Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Twenty years of Merry Maids of Croydon.

The end of 2023 marked 20 years in business for Merry Maids of Croydon.
Business owner Debbie Walker, a recent BFA HSBC British Franchise Awards finalist, started her business in 2003 after a successful career working in corporate roles.
With a background in Strategic Account Management working with large numbers of suppliers, Debbie became well-versed in working to provide support within her community at the highest level.

This made her well-suited to deliver the exceptional services offered at Merry Maids UK,

providing premium domestic cleaning services, from spring cleaning to end-of-tenancy cleaning, with a smile, professionalism, high-quality training, expertise and safety assurances.


Our mission

At Merry Maids, we deliver a high-value exchange to our clients.

As part of a nationwide franchise organisation, we are locally owned and nationally renowned, providing the quality and assurances of a trusted brand with the knowledge and care of a local professional.

At Merry Maids of Croydon, two decades in operation means twenty years of unparalleled cleaning, community care, and happy customers.
“I started using Merry Maids after I fell over in my home and spent 8 days in hospital. I fractured my pelvis, hip and ankle. The ladies were very sympathetic and compassionate. I have 4 flights of stairs in my home.
They changed the beds, hoovered and made the bathrooms sparkle. I have enjoyed their services for 13 months and the only reason I’m leaving them is because I’m moving up to North Lincolnshire. I would recommend them to anyone [and] would consider them as friends.”

Anniversary Celebrations

To celebrate their anniversary, the team threw a celebration in the office in which all staff received a cupcake from Drizzleanddrips and a note thanking them for their hard work.
Their regular clients also received a thank you card, and clients with cleans on the anniversary received a cupcake!
Receiving a celebratory bunch of flowers from Merry Maids franchisor ServiceMaster, Debbie said:
“We are thrilled that we are commemorating an incredible 20 years of serving the Croydon community.”
“From day one, we’ve been dedicated to delivering exceptional cleaning services with a smile.”
“Our journey has been nothing short of remarkable, and we owe it all to our dedicated team, our loyal clients, and our community who have supported us throughout the years. We can not thank you enough for being a part of our journey.”

Charity Partnership

As part of their anniversary, the team partnered with Reedham Children’s Trust to collect donations from their customers for vulnerable people and families in Croydon.

Essential items like food and toiletries have been pouring from customers to help people in the local community during Christmastime and generated donations with a total value of £1161.89!

Jessica Ritchie from the Reedham Children’s Trust added:

“Once again Merry Maids of Croydon and their wonderful customers have been incredibly kind, donating over £1,100 worth of food to help vulnerable children and their families this Christmas and into the new year.

The cost-of-living crisis affects so many of us, but it is heartening to see that despite this challenge, everyone pulls together to help others in their time of need.

Thank you so very much.”


Get in touch

If you are local to the Croydon area and would benefit from 20 years of professional cleaning expertise, contact Debbie and the rest of the Croydon team today by calling 020 8663 3268.

If you would benefit from regular or one-off cleaning services from one of our teams across the UK, contact your local cleaning experts today by finding your nearest Merry Maids business or book online.

Merry Maids of Croydon donates over £1100 worth of items to food drive

Merry Maids of Croydon have completed another successful food drive in collaboration with the Reedham Children’s Trust.

This Christmas, the Merry Maids of Croydon team once again partnered with Reedham Children’s Trust to collect donations from their customers for vulnerable people and families in Croydon.

Essential items like food and toiletries have been pouring from customers to help people in the local community during Christmastime.

The drive, held for the second time following a successful effort last year that inspired the nationwide Forget Me Knot Challenge, has generated donations with a total value of £1161.89!


The Impact

The impact of this scale of donations cannot be overstated.

Last year, the food drive helped support over 100 families in Croydon to have the essentials over Christmas and into the new year.

Like this Mum of three who benefitted from a hamper provided by Merry Maids last year:

“With the cost of the living crisis, I was feeling depressed and turned to a friend for help in finding a charity that could support us. But to my amazement, we received a food hamper and vouchers, an incredible show of support I couldn’t believe. I am beyond grateful for this support, which has helped my children and me.”

This year, the team surpassed the donations from last year, which will go a long way to supporting the (approx.) 27,483 children living in poverty in Croydon.


Thank yous

The Croydon and Reedham Trust teams would like to extend a huge thank you to the people who dug deep to help.

Merry Maids of Croydon Director Debbie Walker, who was recently named a finalist in the BFA HSBC British Franchise Awards for her work in the local community, said:

For the second year running, we have been delighted to raise food donations for the Reedham Children’s Trust.

Our clients have been so generous in supporting this initiative and we hope this will make a difference to families in need in the Croydon area this Christmas.

I would like to thank our clients and staff for such a positive response!”

Jessica Ritchie from the Reedham Children’s Trust added:

“Once again Merry Maids of Croydon and their wonderful customers have been incredibly kind, donating over £1,100 worth of food to help vulnerable children and their families this Christmas and into the new year.

The cost-of-living crisis affects so many of us, but it is heartening to see that despite this challenge, everyone pulls together to help others in their time of need.

Thank you so very much.”


Get in touch

And if you are local to the Croydon area, get in touch with Debbie and the rest of the Croydon team today by calling 020 8663 3268.

If you would benefit from regular or one-off cleaning services from one of our teams across the UK, contact your local cleaning experts today by finding your nearest Merry Maids business or book online.

Care in the community: Charity Initiatives from Merry Maids Bromley and Orpington

How Merry Maids Bromley and Orpington support their community through charity engagement. 

Merry Maids Bromley and Orpington’s Office Supervisor, Jo, has been with the company for several years, beginning as a cleaner.

She uses her position to combine her passion for the community and background in care to support local and national charities.


Jo’s Background

Jo worked in care for eight years, running care homes and fundraising regularly through sponsored activities and events.

These have included mental health and dementia campaigns and a brain tumour charity.

Following the COVID-19 pandemic, Jo returned to Merry Maids, having worked with us as a cleaner before her time in care.

In joining Merry Maids, Jo joined a business that enables her to use her natural affinity for providing personalised care through professional and bespoke home cleaning services.


Recent Charity Work at Merry Maids

In April, Merry Maids Bromley and Orpington donated Easter eggs and chocolate to Dandelion Time, a local charity that supports children who have experienced hardship and traumatic events.

But that’s not all they’ve been up to.

Recently, Jo has been getting active and supporting charities close to her heart while at Merry Maids Bromley and Orpington.

“In February this year, I did 10,000 steps [daily] for Brain Tumour Research. And then I did 30 miles in September for dementia charities,” she says.

Her other recent activities have again supported the brain tumour and mental health charities.

Jo also completed a Memory Walk for Alzheimer’s Society, a charity that is close to all of our teams at Merry Maids UK and Jo, whose mother-in-law sadly suffered from the disease.

She estimates that she has raised £1500 from her recent efforts.


Upcoming Charity Work with Merry Maids Bromley and Orpington

Looking to the future, Jo has some ambitious charity plans for the new year.

Alongside more active fundraising for dementia and mental health charities, she is organising a charity initiative with her son to give out Christmas presents to local children in need.

Furthermore, Merry Maids Bromley will donate an afternoon tea to Southmore Court Assisted Living, one of their regular cleaning clients.

Jo says she is always looking to push her contributions and do more for the people in the local community:

“Me, myself, I want to do more volunteer work in the lines with dementia, like volunteer, maybe afternoon or a couple of hours here and there. I really like doing it,” she says.

“For my birthday, I’ve put something up for anyone to donate to Alzheimer’s instead of getting me giving me a present. And that’s what I’ll do for Christmas as well. We do cancer one, me and my friends. We don’t buy each other cards, but donate to Cancer Research.”


Want to see the value of a cleaner who cares?

If you or someone you know would benefit from a professional and compassionate home cleaning service from Merry Maids UK, find your nearest Merry Maids business today.

To schedule a visit from Merry Maids Bromley and Orpington, book online or call 01689 830000 for a free quote for our bespoke and professional home cleaning services.

From one-off deep cleans to regular visits and spring cleaning, we do the cleaning so you don’t have to.

Merry Maids of Croydon Food Drive 2023

Merry Maids of Croydon’s 2023 Food Drive to support the local community.

It’s not long until Christmas.

This means we’re entering what the team at Merry Maids of Croydon likes to call the season of giving back.

And they need their customer’s help.


2022 Food Drive

Last year, business owner Debbie Walker and her team ran a food bank drive with the Reedham Children’s Trust to support families with the cost-of-living crisis.

Families like Maya and her four young children relocated to Croydon after fleeing domestic violence.

Housed in emergency housing, they had only the clothes on their backs. Suddenly reliant on benefits, they struggled to pay for necessities like food.

With their customer’s support, they supplied enough donations to support over 100 families like Maya’s over Christmas.


2023 Food Drive

There are still roughly 27,483 children living in poverty in Croydon.

Disadvantaged by issues like domestic violence, poor mental health, special educational needs, and placement in care, up to 73% need free school meals as a primary source of sustenance.

This year, the team wants to do more.

They want to help our families at home and those further afield to have a happier Christmas.

They are running another drive and are asking their customers for support with small donations to make a huge difference for families going without essentials this Christmas.

Like this Mum of three who benefitted from a hamper provided by Merry Maids last year:

“With the cost of the living crisis, I was feeling depressed and turned to a friend for help in finding a charity that could support us. But to my amazement, we received a food hamper and vouchers, an incredible show of support I couldn’t believe. I am beyond grateful for this support, which has helped my children and me.”

From the 15th-30th of November, the team are collecting items for vulnerable families selected from six local schools and families in emergency accommodation across the UK.


Items to Donate

The Reedham Trust has relayed a list of needed items.

It currently includes:

  • Tinned Vegetables
  • Pasta Sauce/Pasta
  • Tinned Meals
  • UHT Milk
  • Rice/ Cereal
  • Toilet paper
  • Soap Bar
  • Shower Gel
  • Christmas treats
  • Items made with a kettle (not an oven). E.g. cuppa soup

A word from the team

Business owner Debbie Walker said:

“There can be no doubt that we are living in difficult and uncertain times. But we don’t have to face them alone. By working together, we can make a real difference and improve the lives of the people in our communities.

That’s why Merry Maids of Croydon are delighted to be partnering with Reedham Children’s Trust to support people in and around Croydon through a food bank drive.”

Jessica Ritchie, a representative of the Reedham Children’s Trust, says,

“We are delighted that Merry Maids of Croydon and their incredibly kind client base will, once again, be supporting our annual food appeal. Last year, customers donated 1,274 items of non-perishable food items, alongside essential toiletries. This supported hundreds of local families not only over Christmas but across the winter months, too. We are so grateful for their continued support this year.”


Learn the value of a cleaner that cares

If you are local to the Croydon area, contact Debbie and the rest of the Merry Maids of Croydon team today by calling 020 8663 3268.

If you would benefit from regular or one-off cleaning services from one of our teams across the UK, contact your local cleaning experts today by finding your nearest Merry Maids business or book online through our online shop.

Merry Maids Relaunches in Northampton under brand new ownership

(Re)introducing Merry Maids Northampton, bringing brand new and improved cleaning to Northampton and the surrounding areas like never before.

Merry Maids Northampton has reopened this week under the management of franchisor ServiceMaster Ltd.

We spoke to Office Manager Becky Gardner about the changes to the business and what customers, new and old, can expect from the new and improved Merry Maids Northampton.


Northampton, a history

Merry Maids Northampton has been operating for 18 years.

Previously under the ownership of Barbara and Martin Smart, the business faced hard times during the COVID-19 pandemic when it was forced to close as lockdowns threatened the retirement plans of its owners.

This year, the business has come under the management of Merry Maids’ franchisor, ServiceMaster Ltd.

Becky started as a part-time cleaner in 2011, “which worked wonders for me with the two young children,” she says.

“It was a perfect job. And I loved cleaning. I took pride in cleaning. It’s always been nice to go into a customer’s house and make it all nice.”

She became an Office Manager when Barbara and Martin retired and is being supported in the reopening by the ServiceMaster team, including Merry Maids Brand Leader Vikki Donnachie.

“One day, my old boss called me into the office and said she needed an Office Manager to take over the day-to-day role of going out, doing quotes, seeing off the girls, sorting out the bays and the folders.”

“Vikki has been amazing. She’s been there every step of the way. It’s been useful to have that support.”


Changes and Transformation

Under Becky and Vikki’s supervision, Merry Maids Northampton has transformed, moving from a small unit to a brand-new office unit alongside ServiceMaster’s Northampton-based contract cleaning franchise.

“At first, it was scary, but we’re fully operating from the new unit now. We absolutely love it. The girls are so happy!

We’ve just rolled with it. The girls have been amazing. We all get on really well. They’ve supported me, and I them.”


Aspirations and Assurances

Becky and Vikki have big plans for the business.

“I just want it to grow and get bigger and bigger,” says Becky.

“We’ve got loyal customers. I want to build from that to get more customers, get more staff in and build Merry Maids to as big as we possibly can.”

We’ve got the space now. We’ve got the unit, we’ve got the facilities, we’ve got it all now. It’s just growing and making it as best as we can make it. Which I’m excited about!”

Vikki adds:

“I’m delighted to reintroduce Merry Maids Northampton into the Merry Maids franchise network under the ownership of ServiceMaster. Becky and the team have embraced the transition brilliantly, so I’m very excited to see their growth in driving the business to new heights while delivering the trademark Merry Maids service to the community.”

To those loyal customers, Becky says:

“Thank you for continuing to let us clean your homes. We did lose a lot of customers through COVID, but we also have a lot of loyal customers who stayed with us, and getting their feedback from cleans is always lovely.”

To new customers, Merry Maids Northampton provides satisfaction, a spotless home, and time that would’ve otherwise been spent cleaning.

“Our goal is to make the customer happy, and their home is done exactly how they want it.”

“Hence, we come out to quote for the cleaning in the first place, so we can get an idea of what the customer wants to do in their home and then make sure that we follow the instructions and just make them happy.”

Speaking with experience as a cleaner, Becky adds:

“I love going into a customer’s home, and I prefer the ones that are a bit messy because once you’ve done it and then close that door, you just know when they open it, it’s going to be all nice and clean and won’t have to worry about anything. It’s all done. They can relax and enjoy their evening.”


See how Merry Maids Northampton can help you

If you are in Northampton or the surrounding areas and would benefit from a professional and bespoke home cleaning service carried out by trained and fully insured professionals, or if you would like to work for a cleaning business that provides a high standard of service as part of a friendly and professional team, call 0845 7626 828 today to see how we can help you today.

To benefit from Merry Maids services nationwide, find your nearest Merry Maids business or book online now.

Merry Maids Croydon attends BFA HSBC British Franchise Awards

Merry Maids of Croydon’s Debbie Walker achieved finalist status in the BFA HSBC British Franchise Awards.

The results are in for the prestigious BFA HSBC Great British Franchise Awards, held by the British Franchise Association at the end of their annual conference to recognise the best of British franchising, and were attended by some of our head office team and franchisees.

We are thrilled that we had a finalist, Debbie Walker from Merry Maids of Croydon, who was up for the Community Focus Award.

Community Focus

We’d like to congratulate Diljit Brar from Costa Coffee, who won the Community Focus Award.

The ServiceMaster team and Merry Maids UK network are incredibly proud of Debbie for beating out countless applicants to make it this far.

To be a finalist in such a competitive sector is no small feat and is a testament to her hard work, dedication and commitment to her brand and community. What she has achieved as a finalist is no small thing.

And Debbie has indeed achieved some impressive feats.

In the past year, she has taken on a Ukrainian refugee to enable her to stay in the UK, donated enough material during a food bank drive to feed multiple vulnerable families struggling with the cost of living over and beyond the Christmas period, and been paramount in the development of our nationwide Merry Maids Forget Me Knot Challenge, which raised over £4000 for Alzheimer’s Society and Dementia Friends.

Kind words

Commenting on the awards, Debbie said:

“I was absolutely delighted to be alongside some other great franchisees as a finalist for the Community Focus award.

We work hard every day to make our business count in the local community and give back to the people who we serve, so this recognition means a great deal to us.

Pip Wilkins, Chief Executive of the BFA, said:

“Our huge congratulations to all the winners tonight. We had some fantastic entries this year and these winners really stood out from the crowd. We would like to thank them for being such great ambassadors of the BFA and for representing the very best in UK franchising.”

Judge, awards host and UK Head of Franchise, Commercial Banking at sponsors HSBC Bank Gillian Morris said:

“The diversity of franchising on display at tonight’s awards ceremony – across so many brands and sectors – demonstrates the strength and reach of the industry.  Choosing a winner is never easy and I’d like to join Pip in thanking everyone who entered and sending our warm congratulations to all the winners on these very well-deserved awards.”

Need a new cleaner?

If you are local to the Croydon area, contact Debbie and the rest of the Merry Maids of Croydon team today by calling 020 8663 3268.

If you would benefit from regular or one-off cleaning services from one of our teams across the UK, contact your local cleaning experts today by finding your nearest Merry Maids business or book online through our online shop.

Q&A with Merry Maids Multi Award-Winner Debbie Walker

We sat down with multi-award-winning franchisee Debbie Walker of Merry Maids of Croydon to discuss the value of a cleaner who cares.

During this year’s Merry Maids awards ceremony, we recognised many of our franchisees for their success and hard work.

Debbie Walker, the owner of Merry Maids of Croydon, who is currently a finalist in the prestigious HSBC BFA British Franchise Awards, picked up a whopping three awards in the A Great Place to Invest, Customer Service, and Great Place to Work categories.

I sat down with Debbie following her win(s) to discuss her formula for success and how she feels about having built a thriving Merry Maids franchise in this, her 20th year in business.

How does it feel to be a multi-award-winning Merry Maids Franchise?

“[I’m] so, so proud. Which is what I said to my team when we celebrated the day after.”

“I’m so proud of the team and of the business. Somewhat overwhelmed that we’d won three. A hat trick can’t be bad, can it?”

How did you celebrate with your team?

“I got the team together the next day and told them about what we’d been entered for, what the categories were and what we’d won, and explained to them how important that was and how very much they, as a team, helped to gain those awards.”

“And there was spontaneous applause from the team, [which was] rather lovely. “I was quite choked when talking to them about it. They were delighted. I think it’s that: ‘We’ve done that!’ It’s a real feel-good factor.”

“I think it’s also easy to forget that your staff are fundamental to what you do, so to me, they needed to be part of the celebration and recognised for their achievement. We bought all the staff a celebratory bottle of wine and an individual card.”

“What was also lovely was Nicky Morris at Merry Maids of Fylde and Blackpool sent us a beautiful big box of chocolates, which the staff are enjoying.”

In your view, what has been the basis of the success that you’ve had recently?

“An awful lot of hard work, not just on my part, but on the whole team.”

“We have 28 staff focused on doing their best work.”

“I also very much see that we have a wider team. People like our accountant, Wirehouse, whom we use for our health and safety, yourselves at ServiceMaster and the marketing team and brand manager Vikki, who have all been instrumental in giving a lot of support to the business and enabled us to keep fresh and constant.”

“I think it’s easy when you’ve been in business for nearly 20 years as we have to sit back on your laurels and think: ‘Well, we know how to do it.’”

“There are many things like social media that didn’t exist when we set up the business. But I think you’ve constantly got to embrace new ideas and technology, whatever they may be.”

How do you plan to keep up your momentum of customer service and all of those things going forward?

“I’m reassessing our quality management program to ensure we deliver our best service.”

“We are also looking at our management and administration structure to ensure that we have a broad breadth of knowledge across the team. This will free more time to support our recruits, who need thorough training and encouragement to integrate successfully.”

“We’re looking at an internal restructure to focus on different aspects of the business that I think are important moving forward because I think you have to be a bit like Madonna: You have to keep reinventing yourself.”

“I’ve not got the moves that Madonna’s got, though…”

Well, there’s still time.

[Laughs]

What makes Merry Maids of Croydon a great place to invest for your customers?

“Going back to [my] previous career, one role was working within the community with elderly and disabled clients.”

“I took what I learned there about the value of community and community support and brought it into my business.”

“It’s super important because we need to differentiate from other cleaning businesses and find our niche.”

“I think the world has changed for the better as a real value is placed on what companies do within a community. We want to be part of our community and a business with a heart.”

“Hopefully, it means that individuals looking to purchase from Merry Maids of Croydon appreciate the work ethic and the core values that we have within business and want to align with that.”

In your view, what is the value of customer service?

“Service is paramount, whatever organisation you’re in.”

“It goes from the initial contact, through the sales process to the delivery point where you’ve got staff going out to see the clients.”

“But it doesn’t stop there. Customer service moves on through the customer experience.”

“We still speak to the clients that have been with us for years to ensure we understand and meet their evolving needs.”

What makes Merry Maids of Croydon a great place to work?

“I think it has to be friendly and fun.”

“There is no doubt about it: cleaning is hard work. There must be a great team spirit, and that has to be built from the centre of the business. So, we’re very much about rewarding and recognising our staff for what they do well.”

“Every day, staff receive communication from us, whether they’re in the office or not. And it’s always uplifting. We try very hard never to be negative.”

“To me, both staff and customer experience are about understanding. That’s understanding people’s problems or what may affect them daily.”

“For staff, personal situations impact hugely on work life. If we can help in any way, that’s vital.”

“If we can be a listening ear and they feel that they can come to work, leave their troubles behind them, and have a happy, cohesive environment, that’s super important.”

“It doesn’t matter who it is, whether it’s a new member of staff who’s only been with us a few weeks or 16 years, we want them to feel they’re valued, and that’s how we try to go about it.”

Want an award-winning and caring cleaning service?

If you are local to the Croydon area, contact Debbie and the rest of the Merry Maids of Croydon team today by calling 020 8663 3268.

If you would benefit from regular or one-off cleaning services from one of our teams across the UK, contact your local cleaning experts today by finding your nearest Merry Maids business or book online through our online shop.

Merry Maids’ top tips for a spooktacular Halloween party

How to make sure your Halloween party is scarily good.

Halloween is coming.

It’s the perfect holiday for people who love sweets and chocolate, dressing up, and being a big kid.

Whether you’re planning a ghostly gathering for kids or grown-ups, some Halloween essentials can’t be missed.

Here are our tips on preparing the perfect Halloween monster bash.

  1. Make it age-appropriate

No matter your guest demographic, ensure it is appropriate for the age of your guests.

For example, some scarier decorations might be too intense for young kids.

If your guests are all adults, you’re probably safe to go all out with the fright factor, but the last thing you want from a fun kid’s party is to upset them!

  1. Avoid hard-to-clean substances

In our experience, some spooky substances are an absolute monster to remove from surfaces and furnishings.

While they are essentials for many, substances like fake blood, silly string, and the makeup from Halloween costume sets can easily stain carpets, curtains, and upholstery and are notoriously difficult to remove.

If any spillages or issues with these substances occur, your local ServiceMaster Clean technicians will remove them in a flash with their specialist expertise and high-quality equipment.

  1. Set the scene with some monstrous media

Prepare for your guests and set the mood for a fun and festive time with a combo of themed media.

Make a playlist of your favourite songs to get you in the spooky spirit.

Some hits like Thriller and the Monster Mash will surely get guests feeling Halloween-y.

And if you don’t have time to make your own, check out our Halloween playlist that’s sure to have your party jumping with fright.

You could also play classic Halloween films in the background for extra ambience.

For horror fans, you could play one of the many Halloween or Scream films, Friday the 13th or The Exorcist.

For a less frightening time, try some appropriate films for a younger audience, like The Corpse Bride, Wendall and Wilde, The Addams Family, or Beetlejuice.

  1. Plan ahead

Your gathering doesn’t need to be a massive expense.

Throwing a memorable, sustainable, but inexpensive party merely requires a little forward-thinking.

The only strangers turning up on your doorstep should be trick-or-treaters.

Establish a “ghouls list” and get an exact headcount for the evening by specifying whether or not people should bring plus 1s.

When you invite your guests, set an RSVP date.

If you host guests often, you can also use decorations that can be used more than once.

You can source a lot of cheap and inexpensive decorations from discount stores.

Halloween is meant to be scary, but one thing you shouldn’t be afraid of is asking for help.

Ask your guests to help out by bringing beverages or their favourite (possibly themed) dish.

This might save you valuable prep time ahead of your party.

You can also plan fun activities like games or a prize for the best costume.

  1. Clear away the cobwebs

While giant spider webs are appropriate for Halloween, you don’t want to invite guests into a dusty or untidy home.

Ensure your home is party-ready by enlisting the help of your local Merry Maids.

As experts in cleaning for over 60 years, we’ll help ensure your home is so clean it’s almost scary!

Contact Us

To see how we can help you maintain a clean and tidy home, find your nearest Merry Maids business for a free, no-obligation quotation on a range of bespoke, one-off or regular cleaning services.

Forget Me Knot Challenge Champion: Mike Fargher from Merry Maids Sheffield

Why Mike Fargher from Merry Maids of Sheffield joined the Forget Me Knot Challenge and helped us raise over £4,000 for Dementia charities.

The Forget Me Knot Challenge was a sponsored virtual relay in which staff and owners from Merry Maids businesses across the UK ran, walked, or cycled the equivalent total mileage between each Merry Maids UK business to raise money for Alzheimer’s Society.

The challenge was a huge success, raising over £4,000 that will support Alzheimer’s Society to continue to aid those living with dementia in the UK (currently estimated to be over 900,000 people.)

Mike Fargher of Merry Maids in Sheffield and South Yorkshire racked up 1186 miles and raised over his £2,000 pledge target.

Goals and Dementia History

Mike’s Merry Maids business has had many encounters with dementia over the years.

“We have some long-term clients that did not have dementia when we started to clean for them but sadly now have it,” he says.

“We also take on new clients where they, and their families, wish to remain in their own homes and, with the support of ourselves and other outside agencies, can do so.”

“Sometimes a client wants to chat over a cup of tea, to tell you about their life, family and other interests. The Maids may have heard the same stories several times but will listen as if it was the first time they heard it.”

Mike got back into cycling during lockdown after purchasing an electric bike.

So, he knew, when faced with the Forget Me Knot Challenge, that this would be his way to meet it.

“I try to cycle 25-30 km at least twice during weekdays and have also recently purchased a road bike for use at the weekends,” he says.

He also knew the challenge would be perfect to incorporate into the cycling holiday he had been dreaming of.

Mike’s Mileage

The trip was a week’s cycling around seven islands off the coast near Split. From Brac to Stari, Grad, Orebic, Korcula, Mljet, Hvar, and Solta.

“The trip was fantastic,” he says.

Mike was part of a group of 15 cyclists from around the globe who completed a week of cycling under the guidance of a Croatian guide and a crew of five on a boat named the MV Leonardo.

Some (Literal) Highs

The days followed a routine to ensure mileage was met.

Mike says the seven days were filled with expansive views, “good food, weather and plenty of excellent cycling routes.”

After breakfast each day, the bikes would be unloaded off the boat at one end of an island, and the group would set off to complete between 20km and 55 km.

This included literal highs with “many challenging hill-climbs, with ascends as high as 800 meters.”

By lunchtime, the group would have completed the day’s route and would be met by their boat & crew at the other end of the island.

Then, bikes were loaded back onboard for lunch whilst the boat made its way to a port where the afternoons and evenings were spent exploring and relaxing after a hard day’s work.

This meant that in one week, the group completed around 280 km.

Final results

As part of Mike’s pledge, he also completed a further 720 km cycling over the summer (at £1 per kilometre).

Much of his donations were also made by family, friends and people he met on his cycling journeys.

A further £1,000 was raised from a Google review campaign, in which each new review added £25 to the funds.

A huge well done to Mike for all of his efforts and for making such a massive impact in fundraising to support those in need.

Learn more

To learn more about Merry Maids UK and our work with the Alzheimer’s Society, call 0800 021 3072.

If you’re in Sheffield and the South Yorkshire areas, call Mike and his team today on 0114 272 2655.

If you or someone you know would benefit from a professional and compassionate, regular or one-off, home cleaning service from the dementia friends at Merry Maids UK, find your nearest Merry Maids business or visit our online shop today.

Merry Maids UK ‘Forget Me Knot Challenge’ Raises £4,000 for Alzheimer’s Society

The Merry Maids UK Forget Me Knot Challenge has raised over £4,000 for Alzheimer’s Society and Dementia Friends.

At Merry Maids UK, we are a nationwide cleaning franchise that has long had our heart in care and the community.

When, in 2014, a friend of the Croydon-based franchise, Debbie Walker, was researching a PhD thesis on dementia patients and told her about Dementia Friends, we began to work closely with the charity and have never looked back.

Our Merry Maids business owners provide care across the UK through compassionate and professional home cleaning services.

This often means they encounter members of the public living with dementia and struggling with the disease.

This year, we took our dedication to giving back a mammoth step further by undertaking the Forget Me Knot Challenge – which has raised over £4,000 for Alzheimer’s Society.

The Forget Me Knot Challenge

The Forget Me Knot Challenge – named in reference to the tying together of Merry Maids businesses and the small blue flower that has long been associated with Alzheimer’s and dementia – was a sponsored virtual relay in which staff and owners from Merry Maids businesses across the UK ran, walked, or cycled the equivalent total mileage between each Merry Maids UK business.

The results

Cleaners, business owners, customers and head-office staff from across the UK put forward donations, helping raise over £4,000 – achieving more than double their initial £1000 donations and 2345 mileage targets.

Collectively, the Merry Maids franchise network has walked 4796.14 miles – the distance between London and Dallas, Texas!

Our stories

With over 900,000 people estimated to be living with dementia or Alzheimer’s in the UK today, it is likely that we all know or have known someone affected.

Each participant had their reasons for taking part.

Like Mike Fargher of Merry Maids in Sheffield and South Yorkshire, who racked up 1186 miles and generous donations by cycling and pledging £1 per mile.

“Our Merry Maids business has had many encounters with Dementia over the years,” says Mike.

“We have some long-term clients that did not have dementia when we started to clean for them but sadly now have it.  We also take on new clients where they, and their families, wish to remain in their own homes and, with the support of ourselves and other outside agencies, can do so.”

“Sometimes a client wants to chat over a cup of tea, to tell you about their life, family and other interests. The Maids may have heard the same stories several times but will listen as if it was the first time they heard it.”

Or the team in Fylde, Blackpool and Preston – including maids Angela and Bernie – who each has had multiple family members live with the disease.

“I’m doing the Forget Me Knot Challenge because I’ve been through dementia experiences three times so far, and I’m just about to go through my fourth with my dad,” Angela said back in July.

“It’s devastating. The person you once knew changes into somebody else.”

“They don’t die… straight away. It’s a long process. But they change. They’re unrecognisable as the person you once knew.”

“You have to be kind to one another. You have to talk. Don’t bottle things up, and listen. Listen to the person who is ill because they are just as confused as you are.”

“It’s important that we help them to feel as normal as possible for as long as possible. We must find ways of making this illness easier to live with, raise awareness and money to develop new medication to help slow this process.”

Learn more

To learn more about Merry Maids UK and our work with Alzheimer’s Society, call 0800 021 3072.

If you or someone you know would benefit from a professional and compassionate, regular or one-off, home cleaning service from the dementia friends at Merry Maids UK, find your nearest Merry Maids business or visit our online shop today.

Merry Maids owner in West Midlands recognised as Great British Franchisee

A cleaning company boss who offers rare job security and long-service awards to the people he employs in the West Midlands has won a major industry accolade.

Tom Jackson, owner of the Merry Maids franchises in Dudley, Wolverhampton, Birmingham South, Solihull and Stafford, has won a Great British Franchisee Award, one of the most prestigious honours in the highly competitive franchise sector.

“It’s common for a high frequency of staff turnover in the cleaning industry,” Tom says, “but that’s not the case in my business.

“I offer long-service awards because, generally, many of our staff stay with us for a long time.

“Two of the admin support staff have been with me for 15 years and nine years respectively – each having started as cleaners.

“And even the original two members of staff that I employed 20 years ago still work for us.

“I believe our staff stay with us because we care about them, and they can feel it, but also because many have been part of our journey and have seen the business grow from just two staff into what it is now.

“I also think people are drawn to the job security that a business established for 20 years brings.”

The Future of Merry Maids

Tom, a former bingo firm manager, is proud, too, that some of his customers have been using the company for 18 years, and one has even had the same cleaner continuously for all that time.

He also actively supports the rest of the Merry Maids network and mentors new business owners like Mercy Ikeji (pictured) when they join us.

“I’ve grown my Merry Maids business from a zero turnover virgin business to, what is currently, the biggest Merry Maids franchise in the UK with 60 staff,” he says.

“It’s a far cry from when I started with myself and two staff using a spare office – but I’m not content to rest on my laurels.

“I’ve set challenging goals for the next three years of growth with a target to be the first Merry Maids with a £1 million turnover.”

Tom is not the only one who thinks he will achieve that.

“Tom is a real asset to the franchising world,” says Merry Maids Brand Leader Vikki Donnachie.

“He is passionate about everything business, from his customers to his staff, as exemplified by his industry-defying levels of staff and customer retention.”

Contact us

If you’re in Dudley, Wolverhampton, Birmingham South, Solihull, Stafford and the surrounding areas and would benefit from a compassionate and professional home cleaning service, find your nearest Merry Maids business to receive a free, no-obligation quotation from Tom and his dedicated teams today.

New Merry Maids business in Bedford offers charity cleaning service before launch

After years of working in care, a Bedford-based businesswoman is expanding upon her long career in care by opening a home cleaning franchise, and she’s offering a unique opportunity for those in need of a compassionate cleaning service.

Mercy Ikeji, who lives and works in Bedfordshire, has recently taken her first steps towards self-actualisation as a small business owner with the support of the nationwide Merry Maids UK franchise.

Say hello to Merry Maids in Bedford

Wanting to work for herself but not by herself, Mercy bought a business that allows her and the local women she’s worked with over the years to run her company, ‘Dezionite Domiciliary Care’, while delivering a caring and compassionate service to those in the community.

“I have always had a strong entrepreneurial spirit and passion for care,” Mercy says.

“In my youth, I owned multiple businesses, including a cleaning business in my home country, which I started in 2010 and expanded before pursuing MBA studies in the UK.”

“In my years working in cleaning, I always admired the professionalism of the Merry Maids brand, and I eagerly awaited the opportunity to acquire and grow a Merry Maids franchise business.”

About Merry Maids UK

Merry Maids UK is a nationwide domestic cleaning franchise that provides residents across the UK with expert, hassle-free home cleaning and the time to do what matters most to them.

These range from one-off deep cleaning services for end-of-tenancies, builders of home sales, and regular weekly and monthly cleans to help you keep on top of the housework, complete with dusting, hoovering, mopping and window cleaning.

With over 30 years of expertise supporting their local communities with the backing of a multinational brand, Merry Maids UK prides itself on its personalised, caring and compassionate approach to the people it serves.

Why use professional home cleaning services?

No matter your background, sometimes there are more important things than the cleaning.

Whether it’s spending time with loved ones, reducing the stress of chores or creating a better work-life balance, a professional cleaning service can help give you the time to focus on what counts.

Merry Maids UK also often encounters those in our communities who cannot clean for themselves.

They regularly work alongside residents with dementia and other illnesses that prevent people from being able to clean for themselves.

In these instances, they are recognisable and friendly faces and will take the time to check up on the people in their care.

With the business due to start trading on the 22nd of September, Bedfordshire residents can benefit from professional and personable home cleaning from Merry Maids for the first time.

Charity Cleaning Raffle

Informed by her background in care, she would like to commemorate the opening of her new business with a series of charity cleans for those who may be unable to clean their homes for themselves because of illness, circumstance or disability.

If you are or know someone who could benefit from a free cleaning, you can nominate them by submitting your interest via an online submission form.

Contact Us

If you’re in Bedford and the surrounding areas, call Mercy and her team on 03330 908681 to book your free, no-obligation quotation or book online starting 22nd September.

Or, nationwide, find your nearest Merry Maids business to see how we can help you get your time back today.

Merry Maids Croydon are finalists in prestigious franchise awards for Community Focus

Croydon-based businesswoman Debbie Walker, owner of Merry Maids of Croydon, has made it to the finals of the prestigious 2023 BFA HSBC British Franchise Awards.

Founded in 1977, the British Franchise Association (BFA) is a self-regulating governing body, formed to accredit and promote franchise systems that meet strict ethical and business criteria.

Fighting for her position amongst many other entrants, Debbie Walker is a finalist in the ‘Community Focus’ category.

Debbie Walker bought Merry Maids of Croydon in 2003 after working in sales and marketing for several companies.

Merry Maids of Croydon is service-oriented, but their work has a keen care element.

They see many customers regularly, often going above and beyond the call of duty to ensure that they are safe, well, and have someone to talk to, allowing the maids to develop strong relationships with many.

As such, Debbie and her team are deeply enmeshed in their local community.

To Merry Maids of Croydon, bettering a customer’s quality of life involves more than just a clean environment.

Even though the business is not a care franchise, per se, Debbie is proud to run a business that cares.

One that she calls a business with a heart.

Debbie’s work within her community

In the past year, she has taken on a Ukrainian refugee to enable her to stay in the UK, donated enough material during a food bank drive to feed multiple vulnerable families struggling with the cost of living over and beyond the Christmas period, and been paramount in the development of the ongoing nationwide Merry Maids Forget Me Knot Challenge, which has raised over £1300 for Alzheimer’s Society and Dementia Friends in just six weeks.

Kind words

Commenting on the announcement, Debbie said:

“I’m absolutely delighted to be alongside some other great franchisees as a finalist for the Community Focus award.

We work hard every day to make our business count in the local community and give back to the people who we serve, so this recognition means a great deal to us.

Everyone here is so excited for the event and really looking forward to celebrating with all the other finalists soon!”

Pip Wilkins, Chief Executive of the BFA, said:

“We would like to offer our enormous congratulations to all this year’s finalists. We received a huge amount of entries, and it was wonderful to read of all the amazing work being done in the UK franchising sector. We applaud our finalists for their enthusiasm, dedication and tenacity and for continuing to uphold the highest standards of the association.”

UK Head of Franchise, Commercial Banking at sponsors HSBC Bank Gillian Morris said:

“Shortlisting candidates for the HSBC bfa Awards is one of the toughest challenges of the year, once more the candidates were a very high standard, and it was very tough to shortlist just a few entries. I was really impressed at the diversity of entries across brands and sectors, which is a great testament of the strength and reach of the franchise industry. I am looking forward to meeting the finalists and wish them all luck!”

Winners will be announced at a gala black-tie event following the BFA’s annual conference on 9th November 2023.

Need a new cleaner?

If you are local to the Croydon area, contact Debbie and the rest of the Merry Maids of Croydon team today by calling 020 8663 3268.

And if you would benefit from regular or one-off cleaning services from one of our teams across the UK, contact your local cleaning experts today by finding your nearest Merry Maids business or book online through our online shop.

Q&A with Merry Maids Award Winners Helen Bielby and Becky Hewitt

We sat down with Helen Bielby and Becky Hewitt of Merry Maids Sutton Coldfield, who were recently awarded the coveted Merry Maids Award of Excellence.

During the recent Merry Maids awards ceremony, we recognised many of our franchisees for their successes and hard work.

Possibly the most coveted award of the ceremony was the Award of Excellence, which awards franchisees who exemplify brilliance in our network.

This was awarded to Helen Bielby and Becky Hewitt, who own and operate Merry Maids of Sutton Coldfield.

Their dedication to the brand and to providing excellent service shines through at all times and makes them worthy winners of this award.

When delivering their award, Brand Leader Vikki Donnachie said of the business:

“They have fully embraced all of the support given to them. They’re a fantastic advocate and have seen some great results.”

“They get involved in network events and their community, and have had some brilliant results and have won a couple of awards from it.”

“They’re always looking to innovate and rise to new challenges. I think we all welcome the congratulations for these two.”

Following their win, we sat down with Helen and Becky to discuss what it meant to them.

Congratulations on your award! How does it feel to be a Merry Maids Award winner?

“We were so happy to win the award! We have worked tirelessly this year to develop new innovative ways to build our business and gain new customers, so having the recognition for this is incredible!”

Have you done anything to celebrate your win?

“We plan to have a team night out in September as soon as the summer holiday ends.”

How did your staff react to your win?

“They were all delighted to hear the news. It is down to their hard work, dedication and willingness to try new things that we have won this award.”

In your view, what has been the basis of your recent success?

“The development and marketing of our online booking system has made an incredible change to the business. We appreciate that people are busy. So, developing a way for customers to book their clean online in just a few clicks has been incredibly successful.”

“We have also worked hard to establish business connections and relationships with local estate and letting agents, which has meant we have been able to grow the business further.”

How do you deliver excellence to your customers?

“All of our team undertake a rigorous 6-week training programme when they start. This training continues throughout their employment.”

“We also spot-check cleans to ensure our standards are being met. We provide a great customer relationship experience from start to end.”

“We also make sure we retain our incredible team. They care about our customers and the service we provide to them.”

If you could go back in time and give yourself one piece of advice, what would it be?

“Always listen to what your employees and customers need, and you won’t go far wrong!”

What do you think sets you apart from other cleaning businesses in the industry?

“We are professional and reliable. Very few cleaning businesses have been established as long as we have (24 years). So, whilst we will never rest on our laurels, we know we are getting it right 100% of the time.”

Want an excellent cleaner?

You have more important things to do than cleaning.

If you’re in Sutton Coldfield and need an excellent cleaning service, call Helen and Becky on 0121 313 1005 or book online today.

Or, nationwide, get a free quote on our services today by finding your nearest Merry Maids business.

Merry Maids Forget Me Knot Challenge: Angela from Fylde and Blackpool shares her story

Angela from Merry Maids in Fylde and Blackpool shares her family history with dementia.

At Merry Maids UK, our teams nationwide are undertaking The Forget Me Knot challenge.

This is a sponsored virtual relay in which staff and owners from Merry Maids businesses across the UK run, walk, or cycle the equivalent total mileage between each Merry Maids UK business, tying them together and raising funds for Dementia Friends/ Alzheimer’s Society: creating the Forget Me Knot.

Angela from Merry Maids Fylde, Blackpool and Preston has a long history with the disease, which has impacted both her parents and mother-in-law.

Alongside participating in the challenge, which will contribute towards bettering care and finding cures for Alzheimer’s, Angela shared her story with us.

Angela’s Story

In a touching video that you can watch in full on our YouTube channel, Angela opens up about her experience.

“I’m doing the Forget Me Knot challenge because I’ve been through dementia experiences three times so far, and I’m just about to go through my fourth with my dad,” she says.

The conditions that Angela and her family have faced have varied.

From Alzheimer’s to frontal temporal and vascular dementia, the experiences and maladies were “completely different” each time.

“It’s devastating,” she says. “The person you once knew changes into somebody else.”

“They don’t die… straight away. It’s a long process. But they change. They’re unrecognisable as the person you once knew.”

Why Supporting Alzheimer’s Society Matters

Angela describes the experience and how frightening it is, particularly in the early stages, where the family had little information about what was happening to their loved ones.

“You need to talk to people,” she says. “You need people to help you, so you haven’t got to be afraid to ask for help.”

Alzheimer’s Society and Dementia Friends do just this.

They are there to support and inform members of the public about Alzheimer’s and its varying forms so that we can all be prepared should we encounter the disease.

Dementia Advisers from Alzheimer’s Society provide critical support to people throughout their experiences with dementia, allowing people living with the condition and their carers to access expert support.

Our support will also mean they can invest in ground-breaking research into better ways of treating and caring for people with dementia.

Dementia Friends, as a subset of Alzheimer’s Society, trains people and businesses like ours to interact with people with dementia.

At Merry Maids UK, we often serve members of the public living with dementia and ensure that through Dementia Friends, our staff are trained to provide care and support while cleaning their homes – as they often cannot do it for themselves.

Whether making them a cup of tea or being a friendly and recognisable face, there are many ways to be there for those who need it.

As Angela says:

“You have to be kind to one another. You have to talk. Don’t bottle things up, and listen.

“Listen to the person who is ill because they are just as confused as you are.”

“It’s really important that we help them to feel as normal as possible for as long as possible. We have to try and find some kind of way of making this illness easier to live with.”

How you can support us and Alzheimer’s Society

As Angela says:

“It’s very important that we raise awareness and help raise money to develop new medication to help slow this process. Because it really is devastating. It really is.”

The Merry Maids UK Forget Me Knot challenge will continue to run throughout the summer months – with our teams nationwide getting involved in the virtual relay.

You can support our teams by sponsoring us in this endeavour via donations to our JustGiving page.

All proceeds will be given to Alzheimer’s Society.

Or you can become a Dementia Friend today, either online or through a more comprehensive and in-person training session.

If you or a loved one knows someone who is struggling with dementia, see how we can help to give them a better quality of life for as long as possible by finding your nearest Merry Maids business today.

Merry Maids Award winner Tom Jackson shares his secrets for success

We sat down with Tom Jackson of Merry Maids of Dudley, who was recently awarded the coveted Merry Maids Recognition Award.

The Merry Maids Awards are back!

And they spelt victory for Merry Maids of Dudley owner Tom Jackson.

Why?

Well, not only has Tom, who is celebrating 20 years in business and the acquisition of new territory in Stafford, but he is also the proud winner of the prestigious Recognition Award.

The award is a credit to Tom’s hard work, dedication and commitment to the Merry Maids brand and his business and staff.

Merry Maids Brand Leader, Vikki Donnachie, said when presenting Tom with his award.

“[Tom] always has a smile on his face and is always there to support not only his team but his peers too. He’s very supportive and works really hard, showing commitment to his team members, including inviting them to Merry Maids events and meetings. Despite some challenges, his positivity, passion, and desire to grow are always at the forefront of his mind.”

She added, “He also often gives me a call from time to time just to see how I’m doing. Which I think says everything about him.”

Following his win, we sat down with Tom to discuss what it meant to him and to share his secrets for success.

Congratulations on your award! How does it feel to be a Merry Maids Award winner?

“Really great! It’s fantastic to be recognised by ServiceMaster and the network of Merry Maids and receive the first recognition award.

In the 20 years since I started Merry Maids of Dudley, I have tried to look forwards and help Merry Maids head office by making sure I attend all the regional and marketing meetings, be a part of the Merry Maids representation at head office and also make sure where possible I help out other newer franchisees.”

Have you done anything to celebrate your win?

“As we have recently purchased the Stafford and Shropshire area, it is a manic time for us looking at recruitment for those two licences.

But I have a senior staff meeting planned this month where I will ensure I thank my team for their help and support.”

How did your staff react to your win?

“The team thought it was well deserved as they can see the effort we put into our business and helping other Merry Maids throughout the network.”

In your view, what has been the basis of your recent success?

“I think the success is down to my drive to be the biggest and best Merry Maids in the UK.

And my desire to keep growing and pushing the limits of a Merry Maids business in the country.

The team have taken on board my ethos and desire to grow and be successful.”

Leave the cleaning to the professionals

You have more important things to do than cleaning.

If you’re in Dudley, Wolverhampton, Stafford and their surrounding areas and would benefit from 20 years of cleaning expertise, or would like to work for a business that puts its staff development at the forefront of their work, call Tom on 01384 242809.

Or, nationwide, get a free quote on our services today by finding your nearest Merry Maids business or book online in select locations.

Merry Maids UK kicks off Forget Me Knot Challenge in aid of dementia charities

Learn more about Merry Maids UK’s Forget Me Knot Challenge for Dementia Friends.

With over 850,000 people in the UK estimated to be living with dementia right now, we have likely all experienced the impact of dementia in some capacity at one time or another, with research suggesting it will affect 1 in 2 people in our lifetimes.

This means that, at Merry Maids UK, we regularly encounter clients and family struggling or living with dementia or Alzheimer’s.

As such, we have been a long-time supporter of the charity Dementia Friends (which is a subset of Alzheimer’s Society).

Who are Dementia Friends?

Dementia Friends is an initiative that trains businesses and organisations and the people who work for them in the right ways to interact with people with dementia.

Merry Maids UK began working alongside Dementia Friends in 2014 when a friend of Debbie Walker, the owner of Merry Maids of Croydon, started looking into the charity whilst researching for her PhD on the health of older adults.

Our duty of care to our customers is something we value deeply, so we jumped at the chance to receive training from Dementia Friends to aid our cleans.

Soon, we were becoming dementia friends nationwide.

What is the Forget Me Knot Challenge?

This year, we wanted to do more.

That’s why we have created the Forget Me Knot Challenge.

Alzheimer’s Society is represented by the forget me not, a small blue flower that has long been associated with Alzheimer’s and dementia due to its effects of memory loss.

This is a sponsored virtual relay in which staff and owners from Merry Maids businesses across the UK will run, walk, or cycle the equivalent total mileage between each Merry Maids UK business, tying them together and raising funds for Dementia Friends/ Alzheimer’s Society: creating the Forget Me Knot.

How to support us?

With the challenge now underway, our businesses will be undertaking the task of covering 335 miles each to raise money over the coming months.

If you would like to support us, please visit our Just Giving page to donate online.

Contact Us

If you would benefit from regular or one-off cleaning services from one of our teams, across the UK, contact your local cleaning experts today by finding your nearest Merry Maids business or book online through our online shop.

Father’s Day: Merry Maids Sutton Coldfield

We sat down with Merry Maids Sutton Coldfield for Father’s Day.

In honour of Father’s Day – we’re spotlighting the father/daughter business Merry Maids Sutton Coldfield – co-owned by Helen Bielby and Becky Hewitt – but has been in Helen’s family for many years.

Helen’s father still works within the business and so the pair still enjoy sharing their professional lives as father and daughter.

We spoke to Helen about what it was like to work with her father and the history of this particular family business.

The history

In August 1980, a month before Helen was born, both of Helen’s parents were made redundant around the same time.

“They decided to create their own destiny, get out of engineering and purchase a franchise pooling their redundancy money,” Helen says.

They purchased a ServiceMaster franchise – ServiceMaster North Birmingham – which included both the ServiceMaster Restore and ServiceMaster Clean brands under one umbrella.

The business was a family affair, with Helen, her brother, and Nan helping out doing the cleaning.

Her dad ran to the physical side of the business, whilst her mum handled the running and operation.

“ServiceMaster was run from home until 1999 – (ironically when I left home!) so we had no choice but to be part of the business from a young age,” Helen jokes.

“From cleaning fire-damaged items in our back garden to cleaning hotels, cleaning up flooded or fire-damaged homes with our Dad, Mom, Nan etc or dropping leaflets – me and my brother did it all – and occasionally got our pocket money too!”

Then, in 1999, Helen’s mum decided that she wanted to buy a Merry Maids franchise as well.

At the time, Helen was at university and would still help out with the cleaning on her break days, and after university, she would help with the books alongside her job.

When Helen’s mum passed away suddenly in 2010, Helen found herself having to handle both businesses.

They found Becky Hewitt, who was working part-time as in conveyancing at a solicitor’s office.

Helen and Becky hit it off from the start and “became best friends very, very quickly”.

When, in 2011, Helen’s dad decided he wanted to sell the Merry Maids, business, he suggested that Helen and Becky take it over together.

Helen says her family experience and the skills passed down by her dad stood her in great stead to manage the business and that she knew from years of experience that being a part of a ServiceMaster franchise and the Merry Maids was a no-brainer:

“My dad has taught me lots – how to deal with customers, how to work hard and most importantly to have a good brain for numbers!

“I know the brand so well I wouldn’t have thought to look elsewhere – the solidarity the other franchisees have with each other is also very important.”

Helen and Becky have now been running it for the last 13 years alongside working other jobs and raising young children.

Helen says that being a multi-generational business owner is very important to her and the fabric of the business.

“ServiceMaster has been a part of my life since I was a month old – I’m 42 now and very proud to continue to uphold our family traditions of providing reliable and professional cleaning services.”

As a parent herself, we asked Helen if she is hoping to leave a legacy behind for future generations.

“I don’t know to be honest,” she says.

“My children are too young right now – but both the 6-year-old and 4-year-old do love to clean so who knows what their future may be!”

Need help from the cleaning experts?

If you’re in Sutton Coldfield and the surrounding areas and would benefit from over 20 years of cleaning expertise, contact Helen and Becky today on 0121 313 1005 or book online for one-off or deep home cleaning.

Or, nationwide, find your local Merry Maids business today.

Join Merry Maids of Croydon as a champion for Croydon’s children

Merry Maids of Croydon is a champion for local children, will you join us?

Did you know? There are over 27,000 children living in poverty in Croydon and up to 73% of children are in need of free school meals in certain areas.

At Merry Maids of Croydon, we are committed to supporting those in need in our local community, particularly children in need.

That’s why we are partners of the local Reedham Children’s Trust, which provides essential support to schools, families and children in and around Croydon.

Just last Christmas, we operated a highly successful food bank drive, donating enough essential items through the local schools to feed over 100 venerable families over the Christmas period.

But it’s not enough to rest on our laurels, families are still struggling.

The cost-of-living crisis is exacerbating the serious issues of the known 27,483 children living in poverty in the borough.

Children are disadvantaged by multiple issues, such as domestic violence, poor mental health, special educational needs and placement in care.

These multiple deprivations can prevent our children from accessing education and building the resilience, skills and confidence they need to fulfil their potential.

They will earn less, have increased health problems and lead shorter lives. Without support now, we risk our children’s futures.

“With the cost of the living crisis, I was feeling depressed and turned to a friend for help in finding a charity that could support us. But to my amazement, we received a food hamper and vouchers, an incredible show of support I couldn’t believe. I am beyond grateful for this support, which has truly helped my children and me.”

~ Mum of 3, Croydon.

Reedham Children’s Trust

Reedham Children’s Trust exists to improve the lives and life outcomes of vulnerable children and young people.

They work in collaboration with charities and voluntary organisations across Croydon to reach more children and young people in need and to enable the best support possible.

In light of the support Merry Maids of Croydon has provided the trust, they have named us a Croydon Children’s Champion.

Could you join us?

Reedham Children’s Trust are running a local campaign to generate awareness of the issues facing Croydon’s vulnerable children, but they need support.

Donating to this campaign can provide vulnerable children and families in the area with the support they so desperately need.

What your help could do

  • £25 could pay for an hour’s support for a child or young person in crisis
  • £50 could provide workshops on cooking, food growing and nature for young people interested in these areas as a career path
  • £100 could buy desperately needed food vouchers for four families

Contact Us

If you’d like to get in touch with Reedham Children’s Trust about the campaign, call 020 8660 1461 or 07837339113 or email events@reedhamchildrenstrust.org.uk.

If you are local to the Croydon area, get in touch with Debbie and the rest of the Merry Maids of Croydon team today by calling 020 8663 3268.

And if you would benefit from regular or one-off cleaning services from one of our teams, across the UK, get in touch with your local cleaning experts today by finding your nearest Merry Maids business or book online through our online shop.