Cherry Edwards to retire from Bourne Abbey Primary

Cherry Edwards, exec head teacher at Bourne Abbey Primary Academy with her Chair of Governors John Kirkman and V.Chair Duncan Pickering with children at school celebrating her OBE award last year.
Cherry Edwards, exec head teacher at Bourne Abbey Primary Academy with her Chair of Governors John Kirkman and V.Chair Duncan Pickering with children at school celebrating her OBE award last year.

A headteacher who has been in her role for more than 30 years has announced her retirement.

Cherry Edwards, executive headteacher of Abbey Academies Trust which includes Bourne Abbey Primary Academy and Bourne Elsea Park Primary Academies, is set to retire at the end of the year.

Mrs Edwards, who has been a headteacher for the past 32 years, announced her decision today (Wednesday). She told governors last term in a letter that she described as “the most difficult letter I have ever written in my career and my life.”

For the past 11 years Mrs Edwards has been headteacher at Bourne Abbey. She also took on the role at Elsea Park when it opened in September 2014.

Last year she was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for her services to education.

Mrs Edwards, aged 64, has always loved her job as a headteacher, she said: “It remains so wonderful to have the best job in the world, but of course the children are, as always, the real stars. I have the great privilege to work with a team of teachers, support staff, governors, parents/carers and members of our Bourne community who show the utmost dedication, commitment and determination in ensuring that our shared vision of providing an outstanding quality of education and care for our pupils has been and is achieved and recognised.”

Mrs Edwards is working with the board of governors to recruit a new executive headteacher, but Mrs Edwards has made it clear that if they don’t manage to appoint someone in time, that she will continue to commit to her role as to “ensure absolute continuity” for the schools until the right appointment is made.

She said: “I know that the governors will ensure that we employ a fantastic new executive headteacher who will lead our academies into a very bright and hugely successful future.

“For now it is outstanding business as usual.”

Chairman of governors John Kirkman said: “A new year brings new opportunities, challenges and changes, and this one is no exception. We opened the new Bourne Elsea Park Primary Academy in September and have been successful in opening the new elite Teaching School. Cherry is leaving us very much at the top of her career with two outstanding Ofsted inspections under her belt.

“We are truly grateful for everything she has done in her last 11 years and acknowledge the outstanding contribution she has made to the lives of so many children.

“We will be looking to celebrate her time in Bourne in many ways before she leaves.”

Share your thoughts and memories of Mrs Edwards with us below or email the Mercury at smeditor@stamfordmercury.co.uk.