Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

I'm Talking Up Wolviston; Car Travelling Her Diesel the the Skin Head

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

I'm Talking Up Wolviston; Car Travelling Her Diesel the the Skin Head

Article excerpt

Byline: LINDSEY MUSSETT

PAULINE and GraemeHedley have only lived in Wolviston for around eight years, but it seems as if they've been there for their entire lives.

Pauline, 54, and ex-Boro footballer husband Graeme, 53, who run the village Post Office, already feel well and truly a part of this small, close-knit community, and say they never want to leave.

Pauline grew up in Middlesbrough with her parents and two brothers, but moved to Billingham after marrying Graeme two days before her 21st birthday.

The couple brought up their two children, Katie, now 25, and 22-year-old Daniel in the town, and it was when the children started school that Pauline got her first taste of Wolviston's beauty.

She said: "Katie and Daniel went to school in the village, toWolviston Primary School, and we got to know people in the area.We knew the people who used to run the Post Office, which is how we ended up where we are."

Graeme worked for an insurance firm after finishing his footballing career, but hurt his back a few years ago, leading the couple to rethink their future and make the move to Wolviston.

And Pauline says it was the best thing they ever did.

"It's lovely. I don't know how to describe what a wonderful place it is. There's such a mix of people -we've got Mrs Benson, who was 99 in May, Mr Ward is 99, but we've also got the younger couples coming in.

"It's near enough to Middlesbrough and the other bigger towns, but it's a rural setting. The best of both.

"I always think it's like Lark Rise to Candleford but in this century!" Pauline and Graeme say the best thing about Wolviston is the people.

Pauline laughed: "We get some fantastic characters!

"I remember when we first came to the Post Office, I got a phone call from someone who was saying 'Pauline, there's some cows in my backyard, do you know whose they are?' and I didn't know what to say to that!

"But I hung up the phone, told everyone about it, and one lady said 'I know whose they are, I'll go and tell him'."

Pauline and Graeme also recall fondly how the community really came through for them when their daughter Katie was involved in a horrific car accident last January.

Graeme said: "Katie was travelling in an open-top car with her boyfriend. There was some diesel on the road and the car flipped over. Katie was suspended upside down and dragged along the road."

Katie's neck was broken in the impact and she suffered the skin being ripped away from her head and face.

Pauline added: "Katie was very lucky to survive. People around here were really there for us when we needed them, always asking if there was anything they could do for us, anythingwe needed."

"Everybody in the village rallied around," said Graeme. "That really showed us how much we've become part of the community. …

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