Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 8°C

min temp: 7°C


Gallery: Women from Ipswich and Sudbury receive slimming awards after losing total of 21 stone

12:56 07 January 2014

Sophie pictured after losing more than 10 stone over two years

Sophie pictured after losing more than 10 stone over two years


Two women from Suffolk will pick up national awards for their slimming success on Monday at the National Slimmer of the Year Award show.


Rosemary Conley CBE will present both women with the awards, who have lost 21 stone and six pounds between them.

The biggest weight loser is Nicky Pengelly from Sudbury, who has picked up the Health Professional of the Year award.

The 46-year-old nurse’s weight ballooned after suffering a traumatic childhood, and she reached a weight of 21 stone and seven pounds.

The mother-of-two felt that her weight was getting out of control. In 2003 she began training as a nurse and when the XXL scrubs didn’t fit she had to have them specially made.

On one occasion a patient told Nicky she was getting bigger every time she saw her, and her daughter-in-law introduced her to a weight loss class.

Hollie Bennington had herself won the award for Slimmer of the Year before she brought her mother-in-law along to a class in October 2011.

Nicky now weighs just 10 stone and one pound and fits into a slim dress size 10/12.

She said: “I’m over the moon. It’s something I never thought I’d actually say; that I’d lost so much weight.”

Nicky said the weight loss had transformed her life: “I used to be a couch potato and never did any exercise. I have now run a 10k last year in London. I’ve run two 3Ks last year and I’m waiting to hear if I’ve got into the Great North Run. I can now do my job without struggling.”

She advised others hoping to lose weight: “It’s never too late to try. There are plenty of people out there who are struggling but to have support from friends in the group and sharing experiences is the best way forward.”

The second winner is Sophie Whelpton from Ipswich, who has picked up the Student Slimmer of the Year award.

At the age of 18 Sophie was working in a call centre where she would sit for eight hours a day. During her childhood she would spend her money on sugary snacks.

Feeling unfulfilled in her job she went to study at Essex University and despite shining in lectures, felt out of place amongst other slim 18-year-olds. She weighed 21 stone and 10 pounds and was wearing a dress size 26/28.

With the support of her mum Sophie joined a weight loss class and dropped four pounds in her first week, losing five pounds in her second week. Over the course of two years Sophie lost 10 stone and now fits comfortably in a size 10/12.

Sophie said winning the award was “fantastic” and “the icing on the cake”, adding that losing weight had changed her life, “in more ways than you can imagine. Obviously I’m physically fitter, I’ve more energy and I’m active, I’m more confident and just happier.”



  • How ridiculous Ipswich Entrepreneur! They are by no means 'skinny' now but a healthy and average size, to say they lost too much weight is ludicrous, I can only imagine you've not had your eyes tested recently!

    Report this comment


    Wednesday, January 8, 2014

  • Sorry. I think Sophie and Nicky looked BETTER before... ok, they could have lost SOME weight. But they lost TOO much in my books. They are probably more attractive for sex... to the majority and their family and friends will comment positively. As implementing ambition with results (success) they will feel great about it. So congratulations to them but can I invite you to a bakery or something? Whats a few more stones?

    Report this comment

    Ipswich Entrepreneur

    Tuesday, January 7, 2014

  • Icing on the cake? Two things to avoid if you want to lose fat.

    Report this comment

    Fair Play

    Tuesday, January 7, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

The fire service cordons off an area near Marks and Spencer on Westgate Street where UK Power Networks works to find a gas leak.

A shop in Ipswich high street has been evacuated as carbon monoxide has been detected in the basement.

Artist's impression of the homes there were proposed for lane close to Poplar Lane, Sproughton.

Babergh district councillors last night said they had voted against officers’ advice and refused a 475-home development on the edge of Ipswich because its design was “appalling”.

Police at the scene of the alleged robbery

A 25-year-old man from south London who was arrested following a robbery at a convenience store in Claydon has been charged.

Foundation Street, Ipswich, around a century ago. Little remains of the ancient buildings in this street. This photograph was taken from near the junction of Lower Brook Street.

Foundation Street is one of the oldest streets in Ipswich, connecting the port with the town centre. Buildings which had stood for centuries were demolished in the early 1960s in what was then seen as “improvements”.

Hawkedon Veterinary Surgery is sponsoring a bag dispenser and bags for dog walkers to pick up and dispose of dog’s mess in Nowton Park, Bury St Edmunds. Left to right, Cllr Joanna Rayner and veterinary surgeon Rosina Page-Baker with Marley the dog.

A new initiative to reduce dog fouling in west Suffolk has seen dog bag dispensers installed at two popular parks.

Could the Crown car park be replaced by a prefab platform like this one at Manningtree?

Should Ipswich Borough Council spend £3million on doubling the size of the Crown Car Park – or go the whole hog and quadruple it at a cost of about £12m?

On going work at Ipswich Station

Work on a near-£2million refurbishment of Ipswich railway station has started – and is set to continue until August next year.

Nick Alexander, who died in the Bataclan massacre, in Paris, France. Photo: Foreign & Commonwealth Office/PA Wire.

The singer from the Eagles of Death Metal has paid tribute to Nick Alexander for his selflessness during the massacre at the Paris theatre where 89 people died almost two weeks ago.

Annual Bury St Edmunds Christmas Fayre

The annual Christmas Fayre will see around 120,000 people descend on Bury St Edmunds over four days.

Juliet Bellfield's charity committee has raised almost £1m for cancer care

Fellow fundraisers have paid tribute to the “inspirational” leadership of a Suffolk woman who helped generate almost £1million for cancer care.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages

Local business directory

Suffolk's trusted business finder

Property search

e.g. Oxford or NW3
Powered by Zoopla

Digital Edition

Read the Ipswich Star e-edition today E-edition

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24