“The TSB Community Partner Award honours someone who is making a difference to the lives of the people around them. Our winner is an amazing lady who is inspiring people to get fit and active, no matter how old they are.
Our winner is the quite remarkable ‘Iron Gran’ triathlete Edwina Brocklesby.
Before her 50th birthday, Edwina had never done much exercise and did not consider herself to be sporty. This all changed when she turned 50, and she entered her first half marathon. Following the death of her husband of 30 years to cancer, she pushed herself to run a marathon.
She says: “I trained as a counsellor but I found running better for dealing with grief. For one, you always feel better after you’ve been for a run as the endorphins kick in. But what is more important is the social element.”
At the age of 74, Edwina became the oldest British woman to complete an Ironman triathlon, earning the nickname “Iron Gran”.
In 2013, Edwina founded Silverfit Charity, a charity that promotes lifelong fitness. It started by running events in London’s parks but has since grown organically to 1,000 members at 14 venues across eight boroughs.
Silverfit offers a range of activities to the over-45s including Nordic walking, tai chi, pilates and cheerleading. To make sure no-one is excluded due to cost, membership costs £5 per year and sessions no more than £3. More than 53,000 people have taken part so far.
Edwina says, “I came to sport late but then realised its many benefits in terms of health and alleviating social isolation. Our core message is that it’s never too late to start exercise.”