We often forget, or sometimes do not realise, the impact that other people can have on our lives. The way the actions of someone you dimly remember or barely notice at the time can profoundly shape the story of your life.
I was reminded of this today by reading in my local paper, The Luton News, of the death of my former junior school headteacher. Trevor Herbert, who died aged 85, taught at several schools in Luton before becoming the head of Ferrars Junior School. He was the headmaster during my time there in the late 70's early 80's.
Unlike some, I do not have many sharp recollections of my childhood. The way my mind works means I tend to have vague impressions instead. So I haven't been able to come up with specific memories or anecdotes about Mr Herbert. Except that I remember we used to call him "Mr Sherbert" in the way that kids do. However, I do remember that he was liked and respected by us children.
But mostly I remember my time at Ferrars being a happy one. A good environment for children to learn and grow. Thinking back I reckon that the time I spent at that school shaped me as an individual in a positive way more than I probably realise. Some of that may have been undone by subsequent experiences at high school, but nevertheless I think I owe a lot to my time at Ferrars.
The good ethos and positive atmosphere at that school would have been created in large part by the headteacher. Mr Herbert, by doing his job well, shaped that school and so helped to shape me and many others like me.
I thank you, sir.
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