Peggy runs a long-standing and vital coffee morning for the elderly at the church, which acts as a social lifeline for many, who have been attending weekly for many years. She also hosts a popular weekly mums and toddler group.
Peggy, who lives with her husband Fred at Wisteria Place in Burton Joyce, has always found great joy in helping others: “I’ve always loved talking, just ask Fred!” laughs Peggy. “The coffee mornings are so important to everyone who comes, some of them have been coming for more than 20 years and we recently celebrated a 95th birthday! We used to get out and about on bus trips, but everyone is happy just coming together these days.
“Many of those who come are now on their own, so it’s such an important social get together where they can have a chat and feel part of a warm and welcoming community group."
Despite being in her 70s herself, Peggy regularly cooks a home cooked meal for her group which always proves a big hit: “In December we had a Christmas dinner with all the trimmings and it was great! Everyone who came had a wonderful time and it was fabulous to see so many happy faces.”
Peggy’s husband Fred, who she married in 1988 is 15 years her senior and at 88 years of age, the stairs in their four bedroom house in Mapperely were proving to be troublesome. That’s when the couple decided to downsize and make the move to Wisteria Place.
“It was a huge decision for us both, we loved our large house and had so much space but we knew it was time to make things a little easier. Living so close to Burton Joyce, we saw Wisteria Place being built so decided to go and have a look round. Of course I had visions of grandeur, dreaming of the penthouse! I had to give myself a reality check though as we really needed a ground floor apartment.”
Having visited the development in November 2020, they moved in during April the following year: “It was a tricky adjustment at first, we went from having all this space to a two bedroom apartment but like I always say, ‘don’t look back, always look forward’ and once we got sorted and everything in its place, we realised we’d landed on our feet and haven’t looked back since.”
Throwing herself into her new way of easy living, Peggy immediately got involved in putting on social occasions for the residents of Wisteria Place to enjoy if they wanted some company: “Living here is so fantastic because we are completely independent with the added bonus of getting together with other homeowners as and when we want to. I couldn’t help but get stuck into planning events - that’s just me! We have regular coffee mornings, fish and chip nights, movie nights and it’s lovely because people know they can come along and have a natter and a catch-up if they want but there’s absolutely no obligation.”
Living so close to the local amenities and rail links of Burton Joyce, allows both Peggy and Fred to enjoy an active retirement. “I can walk into the centre of the village in about ten minutes, which is great,” says Peggy. “It’s so important to keep both physically and mentally fit, so we are lucky that we have everything on our doorstep.”
During their life together Peggy and Fred have enjoyed many memorable trips abroad, having visited the States to see relatives and being lucky enough to take in the sights of the mesmerising Appalachian Mountains in North America. They also enjoyed more than 15 consecutive visits to their favourite spot on the Costas in Spain.
Children and grandchildren are a big part of the couple's life with one of their granddaughters regularly coming for an overnight stay at their new home: “Colly is nearly 10 and she loves to have a sleepover in our apartment and we adore having her! Everyone knows her here and she’s such great fun. That’s another reason we are so happy at Wisteria Place - it’s our very own home so we can have who we want to visit and stay with no questions asked, but also we have the support and company of like-minded people when we want it.”
A positive outlook on life has got Peggy far in life and this is a philosophy that both she and Fred are committed to living by: “You’ve got to keep busy, active, positive and never look back. See what’s in front of you and enjoy each day. I love helping people and the groups I run are as important to me as they are to everyone who comes and I hope we can continue to enjoy each other’s company for many years to come.”
On what the future holds, Peggy concludes: “Family, friends and enjoying our lives together. It's like we’re living with this big, beautiful umbrella over us at Wisteria Place. We’re completely independent but have that love, care and reassurance there if we need it and what a wonderful way to live, how lucky are we.”