Betty Coles

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Betty Coles

Post by revdmalcolm » Fri Sep 02, 2016 11:01 am

There have been several references to Betty, who taught History in the early ? 70's.

I was Vicar of Heathfield, E. Sussex, for 8 yr. to last year (I also have a granddaughter at CH
Betty came to live in Heathfield round about 2009/10, and worshipped regularly at my church,
where I got to know he quite well. She died peacefully of cancer last week, aged 85.
I am taking her funeral (St. Richard's Heathfield, at 2.30 on Wed next, 7th Sept.
She had no living relatives, and I would be very interested in any information I can use at the funeral.
I have noted the story about the accident during a staff revue!
Does anyone know where she studied?
I know well that she was respected and well-liked.

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Re: Betty Coles

Post by Eighhttwelve » Fri Sep 02, 2016 9:55 pm

I have taken the liberty of copying your post to a Facebook group page for CH Ladies as there will be many members who will recall Miss Coles (I can't quite bring myself to call her Betty!) and may come up with some more anecdotes for you. I have also asked if the school itself might still hold records which could reveal more about Miss Coles' own education. I gave up history early in my CH career but I do remember that Miss Coles was brilliant at engaging the interest of those less historically minded among us by telling us about some of the more gory episodes from the past.

Changing tack completely, it just so happens that my partner is the brother of Geoff who was a predecessor of yours at Heathfield so it's a small world.


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Re: Betty Coles

Post by Jo » Sat Sep 03, 2016 1:14 am

I am so sorry to hear about Miss Coles' death. She was one of my favourite teachers and I often wondered what happened to her after she left CH.

I think she arrived at CH in 1971 and left in 1974. She taught me O Level History (British political history 1815-1914, which I really enjoyed) and I remember she thought Queen Victoria was a rather silly woman but loved Disraeli. She then taught me for the first year of A Level History, which I thought I wasn't going to enjoy as much, as it was European Medieval. However, she managed to make that fascinating as well. I was devastated when she announced she was leaving halfway through my A Level course (though we were blessed with another good History teacher who followed her). She had a dry and often slightly risqué sense of humour, and was a lot more humane than some of our other teachers at that time.

I think I am correct in saying that she did her degree at UCL, because I'm sure that was one of the reasons I chose to go there too.

If you find any other information about her, I would love to have a copy of whatever you say at her funeral. I edit the Remembering (obituaries) section of the Old Blue and I would very much like to include an obituary for her in the next issue.
5.7, 1967-75

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