An elderly woman has been discharged by her therapist after litter pickers reunited her with a purse stolen more than a year ago.

In November 2017 Carol Barnard was robbed of her purse, prompting her to drive back to her Waltham Abbey home and cancel her cards.

Unfortunately more than £3,000 had already been spent.

While the money was refunded, the 15 photos of Mrs Barnard's children and other family members taken in the 1960s proved irreplaceable.

During their last outing however, members of the Waltham Abbey Litter Picking Posse found the purse in some undergrowth round the back of the Abbey.

Linda Johnson-Laird, a member of the group, said: "It was in the undergrowth. We found it because we do the kind of litter picking that the Biffa people don't have the time to do.

" I took it home, dried it out and sent a letter to the lady, because it had a couple of photographs in it."

The next day Mrs Barnard contacted Ms Johnson-Laird and the two met for the handover.

The 82-year-old said: "I think the litter pickers are absolutely wonderful.

"My therapist discharged me yesterday. I think it is to do with this. I am a lot happier.

"There were about 15 photos of my children from the 1960s in there. They are irreplaceable, but I got two of them back."

Dave Plummer, a long-term litter picker who found the purse, said: "It is really wonderful when things like this happen.

"Most of the time when we are litter picking we are picking up cans and fast food.

"It is really nice to make a difference on someone's life by giving back a bit."

The Posse meet this Saturday at 11am at Town Mead.