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In Memoriam: Ann Roseblade

Published on 07/02/22

It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Ann Roseblade.

Ann Roseblade taught at the Stephen Perse for Girls for 26 years, retiring in July 1995. Head of the French Department, which she undertook with some trepidation at the prospect, she would sometimes say that it just happened and she jumped in at the deep end and swam! Nevertheless, the French Department throve under her guidance: things happened! Not just her lessons, active and imaginative though those always were, but also trips to the theatre and the cinema, Modern Language Society picnics, lunches with former pupils who had gone on to read language at university, FLAW trips to Paris where galleries and theatres beckoned, and last but not least, the Quimper Exchange in Brittany.

In Quimper, Ann helped to foster and nurture this long and successful link with a French community where both girls and staff always felt welcome. She gave it her unstinting support, lending it her energy and caring deeply for all the individuals involved. Ann worked tirelessly to build bridges between the two communities and to help the girls understand and love the differences between them.

Ann’s passionate commitment to the highest standards never wavered and she had the ability to lift us all to the heights we never knew we could reach. Her erudition and keen intellectual curiosity were an inspiration as much as her enthusiasm was infectious: she loved French and shared that love with characteristic élan, instilling in her pupils a sense of purpose. French she taught them, was hard work but always exciting and fun.

None of us who were present on the last day of term will ever forget the bounteous distribution of mini Mars bars in that farewell assembly! Ann’s pupils had had Mars bars before: they had been rewards for good work and the girls had always been grateful (and remembered to put the wrappers in the bin!). Colleagues were not forgotten and the chocolate bars would appear when morale was low or energy levels depleted. For Ann was generosity personified. Generous to all, she gave of her time and her attention, offering kind advice and humouring those who felt discouraged.

Our sincere condolences go to Ann’s family and friends.