A fond farewell was paid to the head teacher of Hawthorn Tree Primary School following his retirement from the post after 18 years.
Pupils, staff and governors gave Martin Litser a good send-off, with presentations of nostalgic photos, music, singing and speeches.
Mr Lister, whose career in education spanned 39 years, said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with Hawthorn Tree Primary School and would like to thank past and present children, parents, staff, governors and parent/friends association for their support, hard work and commitment to the school. Additionally for all their kindness and good wishes on my retirement.”
In the time Mr Lister was at Hawthorn Tree, the number of classes had doubled in size, and the Ofsted rating had improved to a ‘Good’ standard.
A school spokesman said: “Past pupils and staff also attended this momentous occasion, highlighting the deep affection felt by all in wishing him well for the future.”
A surprise evening celebration was also held at Boston West Golf Club which Mr Lister attended with his wife who had also retired as head teacher from Wrangle Primary School. Staff presented him with a meal for two at Marco Pierre-White’s restaurant in London plus a visit to The Shard. The governors presented him with a ‘Hawthorn Tree’ – as a lasting memento of his time at the school.
Chair of Governors John Poucher said: “Mr Lister worked tirelessly to improve the educational prospects of all pupils. He was always receptive to new ideas and encouraged creative input and innovation from those who worked with him and was especially keen to encourage pupils to aim high, to have ambition and work hard in order to create the best opportunities for the future. Everyone associated with Hawthorn Tree School will miss a talented educator, a gentlemen and a friend.”
James Kelwick takes over as the new head teacher and said: “It is a privilege to succeed a dedicated headteacher who has been a pillar of the Boston community for many years. I am excited to lead Hawthorn Tree in this new era and look forward to giving our pupils the best opportunities to succeed in all aspects of school life.”
Mr Lister added: “I wish every success in the future for Hawthorn Tree and James Kelwick, as the school continues its work for our young people and families of Boston.”