Grandparents save British families £1bn in childcare

British
families save more than a £1bn a year by having willing grandparents as
babysitters, according to a new survey.

Almost
50 per cent of the 1,001 grandparents surveyed said they regularly spend time
with their grandchildren – often in a babysitting role.

The
survey, by Abbey National, finds that on average grandparents spend at least 40
days a year looking after their grandchildren – allowing parents time off from
caring duties.

However,
the survey also reveals that grandmothers do most of the work – on average they
spend an hour and a half with their grandchildren each time they baby-sit,
while grandfathers manage only 79 minutes.

But
putting in time with the toddlers can have its advantages. Grandparents who
look after their grandchildren are twice as likely to be taken on holiday than
grandparents who don’t help out.

By Quentin Reade

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