Tributes to former Staffordshire headteacher George Wiskin
FINAL tributes have been paid to an inspirational headteacher who was found dead on a beach.
Hundreds turned out to say a last goodbye to 76-year-old George Wiskin, below, after the ex-Westwood College head-teacher suffered a heart attack while away from home last month.
Mr Wiskin was found on a beach at Fleetwood, just to the north of Blackpool on June 22. He had been in the area for a pensioners' conference.
Yesterday his funeral service was held at Leek's Trinity Church – where he worked tirelessly as a volunteer.
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A service of meditation and thanksgiving followed the funeral.
Revered Richard Pope, who led yesterday's events, said: "George Wiskin was a man who possessed many qualities. He could inspire and challenge, he was compassionate and caring, he was intelligent and thoughtful and able to communicate with young and old.
"George was compassionate about the things he believed in and was a champion of the underdog."
The London-born father-of-two moved to Leek in 1976 with wife Maureen to take up the position of headteacher.During the thanksgiving service, many colleagues paid tribute to Mr Wiskin, of Park Road, Leek.
Mark Warrington, a German teacher at Westwood, said: "I will always remember him as a man not only of great principle, vision and integrity but also of humour, warmth and humanity."
William Calvert, the school's classics teacher, said: "He established a culture of collaborative leadership where it was possible to learn so much by working alongside him and observing how he dealt with all kinds of situations."
School governor Mike Finch added: "He brought a flair and style to the job."
The congregation was also able to share a laugh as stories of Mr Wiskin's sense of fun were shared including his tendency to don various fancy dress outfits.
Barry Norris, a former English teacher at Westwood, said: "I remember him dressed as Boy George and miming to 'Karma Chameleon'."
Mr Wiskin, who retired from Westwood in 2001, aged 65, was also a former chairman of Staffordshire Moorlands PCT and North Staffordshire PCT.
David Hughes, executive chairman of North Staffordshire clinical commissioning group, said: "George was a tireless servant to our community and a highly respected colleague, friend, citizen and family man."
The Labour Party member was also a volunteer at the Trinity Church.
Reverend Pope added: "We know George will live on. His influence, his vision, his love will continue to inspire."
Donations from yesterday's services will be divided between the Trinity Church, Leek Samaritans and Amnesty International.
Pay your tributes to George Wiskin by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org