Long-serving headteacher retires from north Cumbria primary school

by Matthew Cobb

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After 27 years, Debbie Summerfield has said an emotional final goodbye to the teachers and staff at Wigton Infant School.

Debbie Summerfield
Debbie Summerfield

She joined the school as deputy headteacher in September 1990 before taking the reins as headteacher six years later - a position she has held for nearly 22 years.

But Mrs Summerfield has decided to call it a day and is now looking forward to a happy retirement.

Looking back on her career, she listed the way it panned out and the places it touched upon.

"I started teaching in Culgaith, near Penrith and then went to Silloth and then Newtown in Carlisle," she said.

"I then went to Dearham out west and back to Newtown. I joined Wigton in September 1990 and became headteacher in 1996."

Mrs Summerfield said that she thought "the time was right" for retirement - but will look back at her time in Wigton with great fondness.

"I've been in teaching for 38 years," she said. "Age played a part but I did feel the time was right as well.

"There's thousands of great memories that I've had over the years and I've worked with so many special people.

"Achieving an 'outstanding' Ofsted rating in 2007 is definitely one of the main highlights."

Mrs Summerfield said that both pupils and staff helped to make her last day at Wigton Infants a special one.

"It was an emotional day," she said. "It was wonderful, though. But it was heartbreaking to have to leave everyone.

"Although I live in Carlisle, Wigton and the people there have been such an important part of my life and I'm going to miss them.

"We had an assembly and then some of the children gave me some special presents that they'd made."

Mrs Summerfield said that she is now looking forward to what lies ahead in retirement.

"My husband and I have a motorhome," she added.

"So we're planning to do a bit of travelling in that, but other than that I'm just looking forward to having time to myself and with family."

Thursday, July 27, 2017 at 11:00AM
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