Kathleen Mabel Fairhurst (née Lewendon)

Cert Ed 1931

Kathleen passed away peacefully on May 14th 2023 aged 109.  To put that age into perspective, she was born before the First World War started, lived through Spanish Flu and Covid, two world wars, and saw three Coronations.

She was born and educated in Sheffield then attended Homerton College from 1932 to 1934.  After qualifying as a teacher, she then worked in teaching until her retirement in 1973.  Throughout her career she specialised in the teaching of disabled children.

She started her teaching career in Sheffield, where she taught in various schools and from 1944 to 1949 was Head Teacher at Arbourthorne North School for disabled children. She also moved to Liverpool and taught in various schools there.  In 1949 she was appointed Head Teacher at Windsor Street Special School (Liverpool) at a salary of £572 p.a.

In 1960 a brand new school for the disabled opened, Sandfield Park School, and she was appointed as its first Head Teacher, and she remained there until retirement.

In 1958-9 she was the internal examiner for the Liverpool University certificate in the teaching of disabled children.

She was married to Neville, a Civil Servant, and after their retirement they spent many years working as volunteers on a heritage railway in the north of England.

She was mentally alert to the end, and astonishingly throughout her life never needed to wear glasses.