SOLO TOWN: Nation's sweet spot for single senior women
SENIOR men looking for love might set their sights on Warwick, which is home to the country's highest ratio of single women aged 80-84.
Census data obtained from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows Warwick is home to 146 eligible bachelorettes in their early 80s, making up 67.3 per cent of women in this age group.
Compared with just 34 single men, the odds of finding a partner are certainly tipped toward the blokes.
But not all these women are looking for romance in their senior years.
Having both lost their husbands in the 1990s, Jean Croft and Mabel Mott have made the most of independence and are now content living alone.
"You only find true love once," Mrs Croft said.
But readjusting to life on her own was a big change for the 83-year-old, who relocated to Warwick six years after her husband Ronald died on their farm in New South Wales.
When she moved off the land and into town in 2001, Mrs Croft barely knew how to talk to other women.
"It was something I didn't do when I was on the farm. I just talked to men and worked with men," she said.
"You never would see anyone or walk out in the town."
But now it's the female companionship that Mrs Croft treasures as the former president of the Country Women's Association, a member of the National Seniors Club and an indoor bowls regular.
Learning to be independent after her husband's death took time, Mrs Croft said, but a positive attitude and keeping busy has helped her adjust.
"I just learnt to cope and keep myself busy. I am not one that can sit down and read a book all day," she said.
"I do all my own cooking, cleaning and gardening and I am lucky at my age that I can do all that."
Mrs Croft and Mrs Mott both said their friends and companions were mostly other women. But not all women in their elderly years want to forge a path on their own.
"A lot of them can't live without the opposite sex and they do go on to find another partner, but I think you can't be lucky twice," Mrs Croft said.
Eight-three-year-old Shirley Peel has a similar outlook.
When her husband Alan died, she was confronted with the "strangeness" of having to make decisions on her own.
"I went through a stage of feeling very selfish because everything I did was done at my time... I just went out when I wanted to and came home when I wanted to and it was just a weird feeling that came over me," she said.
"It was the first time in my life I had ever lived alone."
Seven years later, Mrs Peel has taken solace in female friendships and is about to go on a holiday to Ireland with two of her close friends.
"But you never quite get over being on your own or losing your husband," she said.
While many senior women have happiness in their singledom, those who want a little bit of romance could look to Hawks Nest in New South Wales, which has the best ratio of single men to women.
But with only 106 single males for every 100 single females, the competition to find a male companion is still hot.
Best place to connect
Finding happiness within yourself is the key to being content on your own according to 84-year-old Pam Eather, whose husband died in 2002.
But she also said getting out and making friends was an important way to stay engaged after you lost a loved one.
With countless clubs in Warwick the opportunities are endless.
Probus, Lions Club, Rotary Club, Warwick Senior Citizens, National Seniors Club, the Red Hatters of Warwick and church groups all offer a place for people in their later years to meet and make friends.
"Since my husband passed away these sorts of groups have become more a part of my life," Mrs Eather said.
"That's it, people need to have some interest other than the home or the person they are looking after."