An army of 60,000 people are acting as unpaid carers for a loved one in a major Yorkshire city.
As part of ITV Calendar's series, Who Cares?, we talk to one such person, Les Thompson, now spending his retirement caring for wife Lilian who has Parkinson's Disease
With an expanding ageing population and decreasing state funds to pay for care, the unpaid work of family and friends can take its toll, as Les, of Sheffield, reveals: 'When I was working you know we used to work seven days sometimes and I used to come home very tired but caring is a different kettle of fish it's like 24 hours.
However, a new business venture is providing a life line for Les and fellow unpaid carers. A new business set up last month providing a few hours respite care allows people like Les to enjoy a break.
'It gives me a bit of lift because I can go out and even though I might be shopping like I generally do I can get out without feeling - or should I say with knowing - that my wife is being looked after,' he explains.
Sheffield City Councillor Cate McDonald says the work of the 60,000-strong volunteers is appreciated by those in authority who wield the purse strings:
Meanwhile, one woman is showing age in no barrier to be a carer. June Shepherd is 81 and thought to be the oldest paid for carer in the country.
She is paid to work 16 hours a week as a carer in Sheffield, tending to people who are younger - and older - than her.
'I like to talk to them because especially the older ones like to talk about the olden days and I can connect with them from what my mother told me,' she said.
- Click below to watch the video report from Martin Fisher: