Tribute to ‘inspirational leader’

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Talented young people from Spalding Grammar School were receiving their Duke of Edinburgh Awards just hours after the teacher who inspired them took his own life.

John Pratt died when he was hit by a train, near Huntingdon, on the afternoon of Thursday, November 28.

A tribute was paid to him during the presentations at the school that evening, when 28 of his students received bronze awards, four silver and two gold.

Peter Kite, secretary of the South Holland Duke of Edinburgh’s award committee, said: “John had done a marvellous job running the award at the Grammar School over the past four years, building up a very successful D of E unit.

“He was praised in his absence on the evening of the awards for the tremendous work he had done, only for us to discover the awful news of his passing the next day.

“We are all shocked and dismayed at the tragic event. John had just been made vice-chair of the committee and we were all looking forward to his contribution in that role. He will be sorely missed.”

Awards were presented by John Asquith, who received his own gold badge during the evening.

Mr Kite said: “John first received his own gold badge, then presented all the other awards. He has been helping as a young leader with expeditions from Spalding High School every year since he completed his own gold expedition in 2005. His input has been of great value to the organisers.”

Bronze awards were also presented to a large number of students from Spalding Open Award Group, Spalding High School and the University Academy Holbeach, who also received silver and gold awards.

Presentations were made in the presence of family and friends and representatives of local clubs – the Lions, Rotary, Inner Wheel, South Lincs Ladies and Townswomen’s Guild – who donated towards the equipment.




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