A fond farewell: The Norfolk headteachers and school staff retiring after decades in the classroom

Arthur VandenBergh who retires from Framingham Earl High School after 38 years, with some of the Yea

Arthur VandenBergh who retires from Framingham Earl High School after 38 years, with some of the Year 9 pupils after playing rounders. From left, Harry Garnham, Isaac Birch, Harry Woodhouse, Abbie Arnold, Rosie Ellis, and Jess Rout. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2017

Hundreds of heads, teachers and school staff are today unwinding at the start of the six-week summer break. For a handful, though, the relaxation will continue past September. EDP reporters spoke to some of those celebrating retirement.

Arthur VandenBergh who retires from Framingham Earl High School after 38 years, with some of the Yea

Arthur VandenBergh who retires from Framingham Earl High School after 38 years, with some of the Year 9 pupils after playing rounders. From left, Harry Garnham, Isaac Birch, Harry Woodhouse, Abbie Arnold, Rosie Ellis, and Jess Rout. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2017

For most teachers, a change of scenery is a natural step during their time in the classroom.

But one retiring assistant headteacher bid farewell to his school yesterday after spending almost four decades in its corridors.

Arthur Vandenbergh, who works at Framingham Earl High School, will now enjoy a well earned break after 38 years at the school, having joined as a trainee teacher.

His remarkable contribution to the school has already been honoured - a Vandenbergh Cup will now be presented to the student who has given the most to the community each year.


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Former pupils also held a surprise football tournament and picnic in the school grounds in his honour, while former student and television presenter Jake Humphrey spoke at an assembly held in his honour.

Mr Vandenbergh said: 'I suppose it is quite unusual in that most teachers do change school at least once in their careers, but I loved this place so much that I've stayed.

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'What really makes the school is the staff and students. Although these change and evolve, they have been absolutely excellent - we work together and we pull together.

'The students we have are fantastic - they support each other and get involved in activities, and it makes this a great place to be.'

Carol Todd, who is retiring after 34 years of being a lollipop lady at Lingwood Primary Academy. Pic

Carol Todd, who is retiring after 34 years of being a lollipop lady at Lingwood Primary Academy. Picture: Marina Tubby - Credit: Archant

He said, over the last few weeks, he'd received wellwishes and thanks from former pupils and parents in the local community, which he described as 'very uplifting' and a 'pleasant end to my career'.

When asked what he'd say to all those he'd met during his time at the school, he said, simply: 'To all the former students, parents and my colleagues, a huge thank you for all the support you've given me over the years. I'll miss it.'

Since his career started almost 40 years ago, he said there had been all sorts of changes at the school, including 'quite dramatic' alterations to the school building itself.

Looking to the future, Mr Vandenbergh said he was looking forward to a holiday in September - his first out of school time - and enjoying cycling and walking with his wife.

MORE: Fond farewell to Hethersett school's nursery nurse after 47-year career

For one primary school, the end of term marks the retirement of two familiar faces.

Adrian La Chapelle is retiring from St Augustine’s Catholic Primary School after 18 years. Picture:

Adrian La Chapelle is retiring from St Augustines Catholic Primary School after 18 years. Picture: Keith Morris - Credit: Archant

Lingwood Primary Academy will wave farewell to both Carol Todd, who has been keeping children safe as the school's lollipop lady for 34 years, and deputy headteacher Anne Sinclair.

Headteacher Alex Burrell said Mrs Todd will be 'extremely missed' by everyone at the school - though she will make a return to continue her cycle safety programme, which she organises.

Deputy headteacher Mrs Sinclair will also take retirement from September after 22 years.

She began her career at the school as a supply teacher, and worked at the former first school before it became a primary.

Mrs Burrell said she is an 'integral part of the fabric of the school' and will be 'sorely missed' by everyone.

'We thank Mrs Sinclair for her dedication and hard work throughout her years of teaching,' she added.

MORE: Headteacher of City of Norwich School Jim Nixon to retire after 40 years in education

The headteacher of one of the oldest state schools in Norfolk has stepped down after 18 years in the top role.

Adrian La Chapelle retired from St Augustine's Catholic Primary School, in Costessey, on Friday, where he spent the majority of his 33-year teaching career.

The 56-year-old was deputy for 11 years and headteacher for seven at what is believed to be the oldest Catholic primary school in the country to remain on its original site.

A tea party was organised in the father-of-two's honour and a final Mass with the children was held on Friday.

Mr La Chapelle said: 'I will miss the children the most. They make the day so much better – I like just walking around the school and they are very friendly and it just feels like being part of a big family. The staff really care for the children.

'I would like to pay tribute to all the children, staff and parents I have worked with – without them all working together as a family team it would be so much harder to be the headteacher and it makes it enjoyable as well. I am leaving while I am still enjoying it but as you get older you do know the time to stop.'

MORE: Great Yarmouth teaching assistant Linda Reynolds is given a fond farewell on her retirement

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