Never too old!

9th October 2023 | posted in News

After taking part in her first parkrun, Railway Housing Association resident Joyce Snell is living proof that you’re never too old to try something new.

With the help of her son Nathaniel pushing her round the course in her wheelchair, Joyce, 76, - who is recuperating after chemotherapy - took part in the Shildon park run.

“It was great and the best thing of all is that I didn’t even break sweat – though I can’t say the same for Nathaniel,” said Joyce. “It’s a great event for people of all ages and the volunteers who make it happen deserve great praise.”

Joyce has been part of Railway’s Housing’s Plevna Mews community for over 14 years. She moved there at first to care for her father George, a former painter at Shildon wagon works, and stayed on following his death five year ago.

Her husband David, a headmaster, died over 20 years ago from cancer when he was just 59 and Joyce herself was diagnosed with a form of cancer last year. She’s just completed a course of chemotherapy and is waiting for a scan to hopefully receive the all-clear.

The treatment meant Joyce had to step back from her active role in organising resident activities at Plevna, though she hopes to start getting involved again in the future.

 “It’s so important that places have a community room which people can use to socialise. We have one at Plevna and it is a great spot to meet up with friends for a chatter and a coffee or enjoy bingo or a singer. We’ve organised some brilliant events at Christmas and the Coronation, a good old knees-up,” said Joyce, who has also helped organise numerous residents coach trips including to Redcar, Saltburn and the Lakes.

Now she’s looking forward to a big family reunion with relatives coming over from Canada who will be staying with Joyce in her apartment and in the Plevna Mews guest apartment which residents can book. She’s also going to use the community room for a celebration buffet.

“We have a really good community at Plevna and it’s so nice to be able to have family come and stay.  I wouldn’t want to move anywhere else,” said Joyce.

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  • Never too old! - Railway Housing Association

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