A Sutton mum has been named the best babysitter in the south east of England after defeating hundreds of others to the title.

Stacey Taperell, 38, of Oldfields Road, was crowned Babysitter of the Year for the category by Childcare.co.uk this week following a public vote.

Mrs Taperell said: “I never really thought I would win, I don’t suppose people every really do. It is so great to receive recognition from a recognised childcare body, such as Childcare, however for me I am overwhelmed that the parents I work with now and in the past think so highly of him.

“My husband is really proud [of me], taking the step to become self-employed was not an easy one. Especially with the strains of having a mortgage. But my business has gone from strength-to-strength and everyone is really happy I got this recognition and I hope it helps me build on what I have already done.”

The mum-of-three has been babysitting for as long as she can remember and transitioned into it after previously working in sales – a childminder by day, babysitter by night, and full-time mother to three boys.

Childcare.co.uk founder Richard Conway said: “Babysitting is an often overlooked childcare service, which is unfortunate considering how needed they are in society – I bet every family has needed one at some point.

“Stacey Taperell seems like a very deserving winner, she obviously goes above and beyond for the children she takes care of and is a true asset to the parents.

“I hope Stacey takes full advantage of the crown she now wears, and I’d be interested to see if it generates some more wonderful families for her to work with!”