Sarah O’Connor:

From her house in Widnes, beside the river Mersey, Mereli McInerney is working for companies in Dubai, Lithuania and London.

She drafts joint-venture agreements, sets up human resources procedures and guides people through employment tribunals. Some days, if she is feeling unwell – she is diabetic and suffers from fibromyalgia, which can cause chronic pain – she works in her pyjamas.

“The beauty of working from home is, if I’m having a bad day, I can get myself on the sofa, with a few cups of coffee and my laptop and my phone, and work away all day,” says the 50-year-old.

Ms McInerney is one of a growing number of older people who are changing the face of Britain’s labour market by choosing to work for themselves.