A FORMER soap star was on hand in Haregate last week to meet members of a Friendship Group and help celebrate the work they are doing in the community.
Steven Arnold, who played Ashley Peacock in Coronation Street, visited Haregate Community Centre, Haregate Road, Leek, on Friday, August 2, to support Apex Health and Social Care as they attend a number of community events across Staffordshire this summer raising awareness of home care services.
Laura Cottingham, centre co-ordinator, said: "It was a really great afternoon for the members of the Friendship Group / stroke club and Age UK; there was a lot of excitement building up to the visit and a huge cheer on his arrival.
"He spent lots of time speaking to the members of the clubs at the centre and was really interested in hearing their stories and about what they did during their time at the clubs.
"Steven was a really friendly character, sharing jokes, signing lots of autographs and chatting easily with everyone.
"There was lots of questions about Corrie and his acting career and he spoke about why he was involved in Apex.
"He showed brilliant understanding of people's need of company and the simple need people have of a cuppa and a chat was something he was keen to promote and support.
"He spoke about the increased need of support and care workers in the Staffordshire Moorlands and praised the work of centres and groups like the ones here.
"As he left we were also treated to a little of the Ashley Peacock voice.
"The visit is something that the members of these groups will remember and talk about for a long time to come."
Darren Scholes, Managing Director of Apex Health and Social Care, said: “We are excited to have Steven supporting us this summer.
"Not only will we be able to provide local people with advice and information on home care services but give them the chance to meet and chat with a real household name.”
Apex Health and Social Care is one the UK’s leading independent providers of care in the home and offers a range of care and support services that allow people to remain living independently in their own home.
They also visited Leek Show on Saturday, July 27.