Ipswich: 91-year-old grandmother knits thousands of garments for good causes

IPSWICH: At 91 years old, Florrie Stalley should be kicking her feet back and relaxing.

But instead she is more keen than ever to offer a helping hand to others.

Florence – known as Florrie – spends each evening knitting coats and blankets for children in South Africa and over the years has made thousands of garments.

Originally from east London, the mother-of-two, grandmother-of-three and great-grandmother-of-seven, relocated to the region to be closer to her daughter Janet, 70.

She moved into Jamie Cann House, based in Demoiselle Crescent, Ipswich, five years ago, having spent her younger years as a weaver and a laundry hand in various locations across the capital.

Now, to fill her time and in a bid to help tots in Third World countries, Mrs Stalley took up knitting and was inspired to help people less fortunate than her.

The idea to make knitted coats came from a member of staff at the sheltered housing residence, who ensures that Florrie’s hardwork is sent to Africa through a charity.

Most Read

Florrie said: “I used to make little coats for my children when they were little, but I then stopped for quite a long time. It wasn’t until I came to Suffolk that I started it up again.

“I have been knitting little coats for the kids in South Africa for about four years.

“One of the ladies who works here [at the Jamie Cann House] was doing it and it inspired me to get involved and start making things again. “I reckon that I’ve made thousands – I get into it in the evening when I come to my room and I don’t stop until gone 10pm.

“I try to make five a week, in lots of different colours. I don’t even need the pattern any more – it is all from memory.

“I do it for the babies and I do enjoy it, I think it’s a nice thing to do, but it also keeps the old brain box in gear.” n Have you got a special talent? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk