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Penny Prentice – From Torksey’s ‘Red Hat Ladies’

My name is Penny Prentice and I moved to The Elms with my husband Rob in December 2010. I was born and grew up in Hamble, Hampshire, but have lived most of my life in Yorkshire.My husband Rob is from Goole, East Yorkshire and that is where we were living after being retired for a year, when at the gym on a treadmill we were watching ‘Homes Under the Hammer’.

One of the homes featured was on The Elms, a place we had never heard of, but liked the look of. I looked it up on the Internet when we got home, made an appointment to have a look at the site and we fell in love with it immediately. That was in October 2010, we put our house up for sale straight away and it sold within weeks – we moved into Lime Close on 10th December 2010 in three foot of snow!

Rob joined the Elms fishing club as soon as we moved here, a perfect place for a fisherman.  He still belongs to ‘Goole Ramblers’ and goes back once a month to walk with them.  He also walks most days here in Torksey, picking up the village litter as he goes along – I am very proud of the way he keeps the village and its sign looking clean and tidy.

We still belong to the same gym franchise in Gainsborough as we went to in Yorkshire.  I also belong to Chestnut and Lime luncheon clubs, so it is a good job I do still belong to the gym!

In the Autumn of 2011 I met, by chance down by the lake Sylvia Poore who had just moved onto the Elms, she asked if I would like to join a ladies group that she was going to form the following Spring called ‘The Red Hat Ladies’.

Penny Prentice photo

To be honest I was not keen, especially when I found out that the only rules were to wear purple clothing and a red hat!

However, Sylvia spent her winters in Australia, so that gave me plenty of time to get think about it. Sylvia, with much persuasion, got together ten ladies including myself at the tea rooms on 15th May 2012, two of the ladies decided that it was not for them but I am pleased to say that the other eight ladies are still members.

By September 2012 Sylvia was ready for her winter in Australia again and asked me if I would be ‘Queen’ while she was away.  Because of family commitments, Sylvia did not want to take over when she got back from Australia and I have been ‘Queen’ and running the group ever since. We meet once a fortnight at the White Swan, as we now have 21 members we have got too big a group for the tea rooms. We also have many outings and days and nights away apart from our meetings, we are so grateful to The Elms mini bus that takes us out and about.

In September The Elms rang a Macmillan Coffee Morning with various stalls including a Cake “Bake Off” and invited Queen Penny along to judge the completion.

judging Bake off for MacMillan coffee morning

I am really proud of our group of Ladies and I can honestly say that ‘Torksey Red Hat Ladies’ has enriched my life here on the Elms.

I am so pleased we were at the gym watching ‘Homes under the Hammer’ in 2010.

Penny Prentice




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