A LONG-ESTABLISHED cleaning service has been taken over by a rival, securing seven jobs.

Darlington-based Cleancare Fabrics has completed a deal to take over the Jonathans cleaning company, also based in the town.

The move will see the Jonathans name become Cleancare's premium brand for customers who want a professional cleaning, garment care and finishing service tailored to their individual requirements.

Cleancare was started in 1985 and has been run by Gavin and Debbie Johnson since 2008.

The decision to take over the Jonathans brand, when it was put up for sale by parent company RML earlier this year, was straightforward.

Mrs Johnson said: "Jonathans has a very loyal customer base and a reputation for individual attention to detail, but it was working from large commercial premises at Morton Park, in Darlington, that were uneconomic.

“We took a look and thought the brand would fit very nicely with Cleancare.

“Although we have consolidated both businesses in Skinnergate we're delighted to have kept the team that made Jonathans so popular."

The deal, which almost doubles the size of the business, will allow Cleancare to offer a bespoke cleaning and finishing service.