AT 85 author Florence Remmer is living proof that age really is a number.

Florence’s latest children’s book ‘Tales of Tulgey Wood’ is the fourth book she has penned since she began writing two years ago.

Her inspiration came while visiting the 10 acre woodland belonging to her son and his wife in Plymouth. Strolling the paths she imagined characters who could live there based on the wildlife inhabitants she saw.

It was, for Florence, the basis for her book filled with tales about what the characters got up to as a way of entertaining children through reading - that all important foundation for learning.

“I kept thinking about the little animals,” recalls Florence.

So the retired nurse, from Bradford, decided to put pen to paper and the result is her self-published tomes ‘Tales of Tulgey Wood’ and the most recently published ‘The Cheeky Sunflowers & More Nonsuch Poems.’

Misses Mole and Mouse, Digger Mole. Blue Owl, Sly Cat and fairies of course have all found a place on the pages of Florence’s wonderful tales.

As well as the ‘Tales of Tulgey Wood’ Florence has also written other books including poetry books ‘An Ostrich Explains and other Non Such Poems,’ ‘The Much Fed Up Tortoise and More Non Such Poems’ and ‘The Petulant Owl and Even More Non Such poems’ - again aimed at children.

The mother-of-three has already had plenty of practice making up stories for her own children when they were little and knowing how important reading is for children’s education, Florence was keen to capture her inspiration from her son’s wood in ‘Tales of Tulgey Wood.’

“You can teach them things through books - good ethics and teach them politeness,” says Florence.

However, it was different in Florence’s early days. “We didn’t see any books when I was young, never mind read them. Late 1920s to early 40s we wrote on slates with a slate pencil in school, war years!!”

After leaving school at 14 Florence, like many local women, went to work in the mills.

She met her husband, Sid, a sergeant in the Royal Signals, in Catterick in 1952 while serving in the N.A.A.F.I. They married in 1955 and initially lived in married quarters in Ypres block, Catterick but being an army wife brought Florence the opportunity to travel.

Their first child was born in Accra, West Africa in 1957; their second was born in Bunde, Germany in 1961 and their third arrived in Bahrain, Persian Gulf in 1964.

Florence’s ambition was to become a nurse or an actress. When her children had grown up she was 45 and decided to pursue one of her ambitions - becoming a nurse.

After completing her nurse training at St Luke’s Hospital, Bradford in 1981 she eventually went to work in a military hospital in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia for two years from 1983.

She retired from nursing in 1993 aged 60 but decided to work for the British Nursing Agency for three years.

When she eventually retired she says she ‘became computer literate’ and began putting poems on her computer.

Florence also found time to pursue her other ambition - becoming an actress. She joined Thursday Thespians at Freedom Studios, Bradford, four years ago and toured as an actress to London, Stockton and Bradford in the play ‘Home Sweet Home.’

Her other acting stints include playing a prosecutor in the play ‘Magna Carta’ in City Hall, Bradford and two years ago she was in a play in Bradford Interchange.

Around that time her son, Sid, and his wife purchased Tulgey Wood giving Florence the inspiration for her book - ‘Tales of Tulgey Woods.’

“I was hesitant at first, but after my retirement I found I had time on my hands.... and thought about the poems I had created so long ago, and then they grew and naturally fitted into a magical village community of small creatures who live in Tulgey Woods,” explains Florence, who has also demonstrated an artistic flair by illustrating the stories herself.

“The illustrations, for children, fit in well with the stories.”

After publishing her book last year she says her daughter, Leslie, encouraged her to publish her poems too - so she did.

So far Florence has written and illustrated 200 more poems mostly for children which she has also published on her website

Her poetry books include ‘The Petulant Owl and Even More Non Such Poems;’ An Ostrich Explains, and other Non Such Poems’ and ‘The Muchly Fed Up Tortoise And More Non Such Poems.’

Florence was also seen reciting one of her poems on the Big Screen in Bradford’s Centenary Square as part of last year’s National Poetry Day.

Following the publication of her books, Florence is already receiving positive feedback through her sales on Amazon.

And it’s not surprising. My daughter and I found Florence’s tales - and poems, charmingly written in a style that is simplistic yet meaningful for children to understand.

‘Tales of Tulgey Wood’ in particular introduces readers to a range of fascinating characters all living in an enchanting place Florence clearly holds dear to her heart.

‘The Fashion Show’ - one of our favourite tales - is hosted by the mice who commandeer the belfy for this special occasion. The only dilemma is what are the bats going to do and where are they going to sleep for the night?

Thankfully, Miss Mouse comes up with a solution - albeit her discovery that bats actually sleep upside down has her scratching her head for a bit - but she soon works out a way to ensure they have a comfortable night’s sleep by gently pegging them along her washing line!

This novel approach to accommodating her unusual house guests prompts Miss Mouse to put pen to prose: “I pegged them safely to the line. Snoozing side by side.

The Fashion Show went with a swing and all were satisfied.....”

Readers can also learn about the exploits of the centipede in the three-legged race and the lovely ‘Letter Box’ about how the animals of Tulgey Wood create a letter box in tortoise’s back to save him from having to traipse all the way to the post office for his mail on his Birthday.

Wonderful and entertaining tales - perfect for reading with young ones and written by a talented lady who is living proof that age really is a number.

“It’s like being in bud all your life and all of a sudden you turn into a flower,” says Florence.

Florence’s books are available through Amazon.