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Over a glass of wine in the local pub, two Witham girls decide to make their dream a reality. Robyn Holmes' and Margaret Locke's combined mission to create a recruitment agency with a difference, was born. Our original team was small but dedicated and before long, Prime Appointments had grown from a start-up to a profiting business.
“It was such a great experience, starting a business from scratch and becoming successful. But we were very outnumbered by men. Sometimes we both felt we were not taken seriously — just two mothers running a small cottage industry business. That was until we updated them on how many temporary staff we employed and what turnover we had,” says MD Robyn Holmes.
Over the next 16 years, Robyn & Margaret grew the business to new heights. Starting out with just two divisions, Industrial and Commercial, their business had boomed, allowing them to open 4 new divisions; Technical & Engineering, Health & Social Care, Accounts & Office and IT & Digital. Not only were they growing their business but their families too! Their friendship unbreakable, "Marg is my best friend and always will be".
In 2008, a blow to the family, friendship and business, co founder Margaret Locke was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, days before her 51st birthday. Leading up to the diagnosis, little-by-little, the Margaret they all knew and loved, slowly started to decline. No one knew what was wrong at first. It was a long, drawn-out process and in this time, Marg had become a shadow of the woman she once was.
Over the following 10 years Robyn and the team watched Margaret continue to decline. The decision was made to provide Margaret with full time care. Her memory had worsened to the point of no return and placing her in a care home was the only option for everyone. Robyn decided that she must do something to make a difference.
In December 2018, we became official partners with Alzheimer’s Society, as a cause so close to our hearts. We took the ambitious pledge to raise £5,000 in one year ,we had no idea of the impact and support our first fundraising event would have for Elf Day. On the 7th of December, we blew way past this milestone, raising over £6,000! So, we decided to raise the bar and set a new goal: £100,000 in 10 years! With an incredible Golf Day in 2019 and a Sky dive that surpassed everyone’s fundraising expectations, we've raised nearly half of our grand total so far in 3 years. With more events on the way we're excited to hit the £50K mark in 2021!
“I am determined to stick to our £100,000 pledge in honour of my dearest and truest friend” says Robyn— "I miss her every day and can honestly say it has been one of the toughest journeys watching her slowly slip away in mind and body. The way the illness affects loved ones is as cruel as the disease itself. You have to watch the person you love deteriorate in front of you. To me, the business reflected her and we have come on a great journey over these 29 years.”
As a company who have experience the impact of Alzheimers on friends and family first hand, it is really important that we spread awareness of such an awful disease. Did you know that in the average time it takes to bake a batch of cupcakes, six people in the UK will develop dementia? Now the leading cause of death, ahead of both cancer and heart disease. Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease. This means that gradually, over time, more parts of the brain are damaged. As this happens, more symptoms develop, and they also get worse. We aim to support all of those who are effected by Alzheimer's, by sharing Margaret's story and our fundraising efforts.
More than 520,000 people in the UK have dementia caused by Alzheimer’s disease and this figure is set to rise. Please support us by getting to know more about Alzheimer's and how we all can do our part to help. https://www.alzheimers.org.uk
What's happening next
Our team are getting their aprons out and fundraising for Alzheimer’s cupcake day on the 14th June. There’s nothing like cake to bring people together! We are collecting donations by coming together to raise as much as possible for people affected by dementia. We would love to see both clients and candidates alike pop in and grab a cupcake or two, to go! Come help us raise as much as we can in honour of dear Margaret.
Donate today by following the link to our Alzheimer's Just Giving page . With your help we can improve the lives of people living with dementia by funding services, care and research.