The incident happened as she was walking on Quay Road with a younger woman at about 2pm on Saturday.
They were approached by three youths on mountain bikes who tried to grab the elderly woman’s bag before riding off empty-handed down Ashville Street.
The youths are said to have been aged between 10 and 12.
A spokesman for Humberside Police said: “We want to find the elderly victim of this attempted robbery and are asking for help to identify her.
“We also want to find the youths involved in the incident.”
Anyone with information is asked to ring Humberside Police on 101, quoting log reference 16/117860/18.