‘Eve’s legacy is huge’ - Tributes to primary school head who taught in Colombia and toured the Amazon

PUBLISHED: 15:48 02 July 2019 | UPDATED: 15:56 02 July 2019

Evelyn May Tavener, who was head teacher of Bungay Primary School has been remembered as

Evelyn May Tavener, who was head teacher of Bungay Primary School has been remembered as "friendly" woman. Picture: Contributed by Snudden family


A teacher who left “no child in her school unable to read or write” has been remembered as a “popular and friendly woman” following her death, aged 92.

"Eve's legacy is huge". Picture: Contributed by Snudden family

Friends and family gathered at Waveney Memorial Park and Crematorium to hear stories of Evelyn May Tavener, née Dunn, the former headteacher of Bungay Primary School.

Born in Great Yarmouth, she was influenced by the strong women in her life and taught to be focused, passionate and driven.

According to family members, she believed firmly in education, loved school and was constantly learning new things.

She eventually won a scholarship to the Great Yarmouth Grammar School and then went on to teacher training college in Salisbury.

On being evacuated Eve met her husband-to-be Clive - a paratrooper who served in Palestine.

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The pair married, moved to the Kettering area and had their son Nigel, who was born in 1958.

Clive left Eve and Nigel and emigrated to America, while the pair were heartbroken - a fire was sparked in the newly-single mother.

Soon after, she applied for a job in the Anglo Colombian School in Bogota, Colombia.

As an avid writer, she kept detailed diary entries of being awoken to gun shots, living without water or electricity and about the hostilities of living in a military dictatorship.

Three years later, they moved back to Britain and in 1977 she was offered a position as the head teacher of Bungay Primary School.

"She ruled with a rod of iron in a velvet glove - sometimes affectionately known as the Dragon, she cared deeply for the children and their families, following the progress of many into adulthood," the family said.

She met her husband Louis Tavener and they married, living in various towns and villages in Norfolk and Suffolk until his death in 2012 when she settled in a Bungalow in Loddon.

"Eve's legacy is huge. As well as her son, grandchildren and great grand child, many, many people have had their lives enriched by knowing Eve, and of course hundreds and hundreds of children received a better education because of Eve," they said.

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