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When my husband and I reached middle-age, we developed different hobbies. It was then we realized our shared desire to explore something entirely new to both of us. We decided to pursue beekeeping!

Jennifer Abercrombie

Lark Hill Village

Meet Jennifer!

Jennifer has enjoyed a rich career working in theatre costume, for a television show, as a freelance interior decorator, and running a practice for a group of surgeons. Here she discusses her extra ordinary life at Lark Hill Village.

When my husband and I reached middle-age, we developed different hobbies. It was then that we realised our shared desire to explore something entirely new to both of us. I recalled my mother mentioning a school that used to keep bees when she was young, so we decided to pursue beekeeping. Luckily, we had a local beekeeper in our town, and since we had recently moved into a house with a spacious garden, we joined the local beekeeping society to learn about bees. That decision marked the beginning of an incredible journey.

In Hampshire, we lived in a former vicarage where we kept bees for 14 years. After a further 12 years in another house, we eventually relocated to Nottingham’s Lark Hill Village. The local community even rallied together to raise funds for us to continue keeping bees there. While other residents expressed interest and assisted us with woodwork, it was only my husband and I who tended to the bees.

I moved to Lark Hill Village to be closer to my son in Nottingham, especially as my husband’s Parkinson’s disease progressed. We wanted a supportive environment and a greater sense of security, and this village provided exactly that. After my husband passed away, I found solace in the feeling of safety and ease in obtaining help when needed. The community here is truly fantastic, offering a myriad of activities and events to choose from. Personally, I am involved in various engagements such as delivering newspapers five mornings a week, volunteering at reception once a week, and helping organise quizzes. Additionally, during the pandemic, I delivered lunches to fellow residents.

At 84 years old, I am surrounded at Lark Hill by inspiring role models in their 90s. People are thriving, especially in places like ours where an active lifestyle is encouraged. It truly keeps us going. I firmly believe that if it wasn’t for activities like circuit training, line dancing, and everything else, I wouldn’t be as physically fit as I am today.

My family know there is a first line of defence for me if something goes wrong. This is why the charity shines – the variety of people. One of the nastiest things about old age is not being needed, we all yearn to be of significance. The quickest way to feel good about ourselves is to make somebody else feel good. That’s why I love being where I am and why I value an active lifestyle.


Other Stories

When my parents got older, I reduced work hours to part time to support them. I didn’t want to put my children in the same position, being here we don’t have to. Here we have everything we need, it’s the banter and the wonderful sense of community that I love, it really is amazing.

Brenda & George

Lark Hill Village

The best thing is having the support. We see each other most days. You can argue with a friend and you could never speak to them again but if you argue with a sibling they are still your sibling in the morning. I’m very protective of my brothers.”

Betty, Jim and Liam

Hagley Road Village