Last Friday we said goodbye to Mr Malcolm Wainwright, as many will know him, for he was the headteacher at Churchfield Primary School in Cudworth for 31 years.

To his friends, which Pete and I had the great pleasure to know him as, he was Malc.

He saw and helped generations of families go through the school doors and his door was always open, not only to pupils and parents, but also to the staff that worked with him.

The impact that he had on the community of Cudworth was felt by many, adults and children alike.

He showed love, care and kindness towards everyone, and I think that I am safe in saying he too was loved by many.

He certainly left his mark on the school - he believed that every child and family would be welcomed with open arms, something that he always tried to do, with dedication, love for the community and passion.

But he also had a fun side to him. His assemblies were famous, and all the staff used to love them as much as the kids did. He would always tell a fable, and the kids’ faces were priceless as were most of the expressions of staff as he played out all the characters.

Mr Wainwright knew all too well that a child’s education wasn’t just confined to the classroom but from life’s experiences and would often take groups of children out on walks and camping trips telling them in great detail about various things.

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To be honest I think he’d much prefer to be out and about outside of school than inside. He loved to get dressed up on Red Nose Day and other events that the school participated in, but his favourite was dressing up as Elvis Presley and singing in a school production.

He was never afraid to join in and show the kids that if he could do it then anyone could. When year sixes were ready for leaving he could never let them leave without putting on one of his BBQs for them all, where he would supply endless sausages and burgers and music of their choice.

When he himself finally retired it felt as though something huge had come to an end in Cudworth and I can honestly say that the school has always had something missing, almost as if he had taken the heart of it away with him.

For me personally my own personal regret was that our grandchildren would never have the chance to have such an amazing headteacher, to listen to all the wonderful assemblies and go on all the outings that he made so enjoyable.

Kids never think of teachers or headteachers as anything other than that, but Malc had a family life too with children and grandchildren.

He loved going off in his touring caravan and would make all of us laugh at the stories he would tell us when he came back.

Some I wouldn’t dare to repeat. Yes, he was a truly good story-teller. If I was given 10,000 words to write every day for a year, I wouldn’t be able to write everything there is to tell about Malc.

Finally, to sum up Malc, or ‘Mr Wainwright’ to lots: a poem that was read at his funeral titled ‘Not, How Did He Die, But How Did He Live?’ absolutely says it all. Have a read or it if you can.

A man that left his mark on Cudworth and all that knew him. A true legend and larger-than-life character.