School unveils a memorial to loved teacher

The Oxford Times: Angela Clare with her children Emily 10, and Daniel, 12 Angela Clare with her children Emily 10, and Daniel, 12

A PEACE garden featuring a wall of angels is to provide a lasting reminder of a North Oxford primary school teacher.

St Aloysius Catholic Primary School has created a walled garden in memory of Year One teacher Angela Clare, who died of cancer earlier this year aged 39.

Each of the school’s 232 pupils contributed by painting an angel on tiles for a large mosaic to be unveiled today.

The mother-of-two from Bicester was known by her maiden name, Miss Sloan, at the school in Woodstock Road, where she taught for seven years and which she attended as a child.

A non-smoker, she died in January, five months after being diagnosed with lung cancer.

The memorial garden will feature a plaque dedicated to the popular teacher, who was known for her patient and gentle manner.

Parents and pupils, including Harry and Sam Richards, both seven, and Natalie Ray, eight, have been busy all term painting and repairing walls and planting fragrant flowers, fruit trees and vines to transform a previously neglected part of the playground.

Natalie said: “I think it will be a good place to go and read or pray.”

The project was led by the school’s PTA with the expertise of garden designer and parent Bea Ray.

The mosaic was organised by teachers Sophie Kempton, Louise Frith-Powell and Sylwia Arniel, with tiles and paints supplied by Unique Creations in Summertown, which also glazed and fired the finished designs.

The garden will be officially opened with a dedication by school chaplain Father Daniel Seward, after a remembrance service which will be attended by the whole school.

Mrs Clare’s family will attend the ceremony, including her husband Brian, their children Daniel, 12, Emily, 10, parents Dr John and Elizabeth Sloan and her sisters Monica Nelson and Julia Saunders and their children.

Headteacher Tom Walker said: “We wanted to create a lasting memorial that would involve all the pupils whose lives she touched and keep her name alive for future generations at St Aloysius.”

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