Four decades in the classroom comes to a close for teacher Anne

Teacher Anne Battersby, who has retired this week after 28 years at Ightenhill Primary School, Burnley, surrounded by some of her students
Teacher Anne Battersby, who has retired this week after 28 years at Ightenhill Primary School, Burnley, surrounded by some of her students

Watching her students progress and develop has been one of the highlights of a 37 career in teaching for Mrs Anne Battersby.

And when one of those students includes Olympic gold medallist Dame Kelly Holmes, you can consider it has been a career very well spent.

Teacher Mrs Anne Battersby with flowers she was presented with on her last day at Ightenhill Primary School in Burnley.

Teacher Mrs Anne Battersby with flowers she was presented with on her last day at Ightenhill Primary School in Burnley.

Anne, who retired this week, taught Dame Kelly in her first job at the Hugh Christie School in Tonbridge, Kent, where in just four years she rose to the post of Head of the Home Economics and Textiles Department after just four years.

Originally from Plymouth, Anne, who has two sons James and Lewis, moved to Burnley after she was offered a job at the former Ivy Bank High School.

She worked there for a couple of years before moving to Ightenhill Primary School.

And it was where she was to remain for the next 28 years, serving under five headteachers.

Anne (59) said: "I have been very lucky to have worked with such a wonderful team of people and the children have been a joy."

As the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator Anne relished this role as it allowed her to work with the pupils and their families, helping them to progress and develop as a unit.

She has taught all ages, from reception to year six, and believes that the key element to her role is to help youngsters to grow, learn and develop to their full potential regardless of exam results and tests.

Anne has helped to establish a number of clubs at the school including an arts and crafts club and an ocarina music club which she plans to continue running weekly on a voluntary basis so she can still keep in contact with former colleagues and also the pupils.

She has a busy retirement planned which includes devoting more time to her hobbies which include card making and cake decorating.

Anne and her husband, Nigel, who works as a solicitor for Greater Manchester Police, are also planning a trip to Australia to see Lewis who moved there 18 months ago.