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About HSP

Our History

HSP was originally the brainchild of three individuals in June 2016, of these two remain actively and passionately involved with the Charity.


Lynn Bibby had a career within caring and then as a prison officer. However, when Paul, her husband, suffered ill health, she stopped working to look after him. Paul had worked as a bus and coach driver until he retired due to ill health in his 40’s. 

Initially working with another Charity providing hot meals to the homeless and needy in Leigh, they quickly became responsible for the end to end running of the meal service. However, after Paul suffered strokes in 2016 and 2017, they both needed to step back whilst Paul recuperated.

The couple didn’t return to the Charity they had been working with as it had changed direction, charging clients for meals. After receiving an unexpected cheque for £5000, the couple decided to use it to set up their own Charity to continue the work to provide free hot meals to the homeless in Leigh.

The £5000 paid for the first three months rent on the flat above a café on Railway Road, Leigh. This didn’t have a commercial kitchen but provided space for a dining area, a sitting area and a small office come storage space. A corridor was able to be utilised as a storage area where cold food could be prepared, and hot drinks made.

Commencing food service in August 2016, serving one meal per day from the premises on Railway Road in Leigh, around 40 meals per day were served. This has steadily increased with up to 140 meals per day being provided across two sittings. The kitchen area was adapted with a commercial oven and fryers being installed. This enabled the service to increase the type of food offered to clients.

As the number of clients increased, the need to offer more support increased also. Clients were asking for help finding accommodation, support with benefit issues and addiction. The venue was constantly full of clients wanting assistance as, due to the openness and caring attitudes of Lynn, Paul and the volunteers, clients opened to them. It became clear that the premises were no longer fit for purpose, too warm in summer, too cold in winter and a constant battle with damp.

In August 2018, the Charity moved, sharing premises with The Brick on Chapel Street. However, whilst our services are for similar clients, the ways in which we provide support people and the need to be open to clients was not a good fit with the services provided by The Brick. Thus, we moved to our current premises on Charles Street in November 2018.

The way in which our service has developed considerably since moving to Charles House, which will be talked about in more detail across the presentation. As a result of the development, the name of the Charity has changed to reflect the differing types of person seeking support, food and compassion. Initially known as ‘Homeless Support Project’ we are now known as ‘Helping to Support People’ as our services are not restricted to the homeless.

We provide support to anyone in need. That includes the elderly and vulnerable, those with addictions and mental health issues. Our staff will listen to and help any individual in need of support, looking for ways in which to help.

As the types of service have increased, so have outgoings and the need to financial support.

About Us: About Us
About Us: Meet the Team

Meet the Team

The Faces of Our Organisation

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Paul Bibby

Founder

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Lynn Bibby

Founder

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- Gemma Bannister

Client Support and Volunteer Manager

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- Marie Henshaw

Kitchen Manager & Chef

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- Christine Bibby

Shop Manager

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- Darren Lewthwaite

Driver

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- Phil Taylor

Part time Cook and Volunteer

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- Barbara Eckersley

Venue Volunteer

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- Sheldon Jones

Volunteer Drivers Mate

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- Colin Alcock

Volunteer

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- Daine Devlin

Shop Volunteer

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- John Williamson

Shop Volunteer

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- Michelle Strode

Shop Volunteer

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- Katherine Bradbury

Volunteer

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Pauline Dean

Volunteer

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