Last week I heard the very sad news that my A level history teacher had passed away. Today there was a memorial service for him which I regret to say I couldn't make, but I can at least share a bit of my appreciation for him here.
Mr Ward was one of those handful of teachers you have who you never forget for all the right reasons. He could be devastatingly sarcastic when he chose - so like every good teacher you wouldn't want to cross him but he was also very funny, approachable, kind, and must have had patience in spades, I also realise now what a gifted teacher he was.
He made 16th century European history come alive - even the economics. He wasn't the sort of teacher who would give you an answer when you asked a question, but would instead make you go and work it out or look it up for yourself, it was an excellent preparation for both university and life. He also encouraged us to look at a subject in a broader sort of way. I left school and went off to read History because he's inspired me so much, I ended up with a degree in History of Art because in the end that was the department that lived up to the expectations that Mr Ward had given me.
His son is absolutely right when he says his father will be sorely missed by all who knew him. He was a remarkable man.