A SHRINKING South Tyneside pensioner is an inspiration to others after shedding more than 4st in weight.
Audrey Jones joined Slimming World in March 2013 after being referred by her GP due to having high blood pressure.
However, the 79-year-old is delighted to find that not only has she shed the pounds, but she now has a new lease of life.
The mum-of-two from Fieldway, Jarrow, said: “Joining up was the best thing I’ve ever done.
“Looking back, I must have been quite unfit because I couldn’t walk very far.
“But now I can walk all over and I feel great.
“I’ve lost 4st 1lb, and all my family are really pleased with my new look.
“Sometimes now I don’t even recognise my shadow.
“I wouldn’t really want to lose any more weight, so I am going to maintain what I am now.”
Audrey is a member of the Sliming World Group based at Boldon Independent Methodist Church in North Road, Boldon Colliery, where she goes to get weighed every Thursday.
During the last 17 months she’s gone down from a 22-24 dress size to a 12-16.
Audrey, who used to be a toll collector at the Tyne Tunnel, says it doesn’t feel like she’s been on a diet.
She said: “You have so much choice when it comes to the food, and I love all the recipes.
“It’s not like you’re on a diet at all.
“I love going to the meetings too.
“Everyone is so lovely and supportive, nobody ever puts you down.
“It’s lovely. I’d recommend losing weight to anyone.
“I have a new lease of life and my feet never ache now from walking – it’s great.”
Audrey’s efforts haven’t gone unnoticed.
Last week she was crowned ‘woman of the year’ by her fellow slimmers at the group.
Pauline Fox, the group’s consultant, said: “Considering Audrey’s age she is fantastic.
“It’s wonderful to see how much her health has improved and what she can now achieve.
“She’s an inspiration to myself and all of the other members.”