A POPULAR Grays business celebrated its tenth anniversary – raising almost £3,000 for Guide Dogs for the Blind.

Davina Barton, 35, owner of Molly’s Grooming, celebrated the company’s success by fundraising £2,700 during an event on Friday evening with the help of donated raffle prizes, ticket sales and games.

Molly’s Grooming, now of Jesmond Road, started as a single mobile dog-grooming van back in 2009, but quickly saw success and has expanded into premises and employed a dedicated team of skilled staff along with more than a thousand customers.

Mum of two Davina said: “I thought what better way to celebrate ten years working with dogs, than to raise some money for an amazing charity – like Guide Dogs for the Blind.”

Tina Boreham, a representative of Guide Dogs for the Blind, attended the event and was astounded.

Speaking on the night she said: “We’ve attended Davina’s lovely event this evening – which we’re absolutely blown away by. She has done such a fantastic job. It is absolutely essential for us that people like Davina hold these events, so we are able to fund our services with guide dogs.

“Without them, we wouldn’t be able to provide our wonderful guide dogs to people with sight loss so that they may have the independence to live their life the way they want to live it.”

June Maylin from Corringham has been blind for her entire life and was invited to the event, accompanied by her guide dog Shannon, to explain why the charity’s work is so important.

She said: “This is a great way to tell people in the community what guide dogs do. Without these events, we just wouldn’t have the services we need. Guide Dogs for the Blind not only help train guide dogs, but also pay for vet bills and food along with everything else.

“Without all these events, that just wouldn’t happen and sadly, people like me might not be able to afford a guide dog.”

Davina added: “I’m so overwhelmed by everybody’s support, not only for my business, but evenings such as these make such a positive impact on the lives of people in need. Thank you to absolutely everybody who was involved with the evening. I would also like to thank all of the stallholders for bringing their handmade items to sell at the event and everybody who donated prizes.”